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Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service - ContactCenterWorld.com Blog

Considering an Answering Service? The Pros & Cons of Outsourcing

Many businesses consider outsourcing their answering services process when they are in growth mode or would like to be. If you are considering outsourcing your business’s call answering services, it’s important to understand the pros and cons of doing so.

First of all, what is an answering service?

An answering service is designed to handle your business calls allowing you to focus your time on the demands of your business. Your business calls are routed to the answering service where a highly trained agent takes the call and provides your callers with exceptional customer service. Additionally, answering services are equipped to classify your calls and provide several other beneficial services. The goal of an answering service is to become an extension of your business while freeing up your team’s time so they can focus on more important tasks.

How are Answering Services Priced?

To the surprise of many, hiring an answering service is much less expensive on average than hiring an employee. Many factors go into determining the price of an answering service including the size of the business, the number of calls the business receives, and the average length of time per call. However, you will likely spend much less on an answering service that provides 24/7 service than you will hiring a 9-5 receptionist. Some answering services charge by the minute, some by call, and some offer monthly plans.

Ways Answering Services Become an Extension of your Business

From learning about your business to providing excellent customer service, answering services are designed to help your business at a fraction of the cost of hiring new staff. Anyone answering your phone needs to not only offer friendly customer service, but they should also be able to answer a variety of commonly asked questions and do so efficiently. Answering services have experience working with specific industries and are employed by a variety of industries including legal offices, medical practices, non-profits, hospitality, retail, professional services, and many more.

Pros of Outsourcing Answering Services

  • Outsourcing answering services is less expensive than hiring staff.

Business owners spend tens of thousands of dollars every year hiring and training receptionists, providing workspace and equipment, and paying for their benefits. Outsourcing allows you to save on those costs and benefit from professional operators who are trained specifically to represent your brand as you would do.

  • There is no downtime with answering services.

Your customers’ phone calls are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year or just when you need support – you choose what works for you. You don’t need to worry about operators taking vacations or time off for any reason because your calls are always covered.

  • Outsourcing answering services allows your staff to focus on your core business. 

When your staff only handles the calls that are relevant to them, they can effectively focus on other important aspects of your business. At the same time, you know that your customers’ calls are being handled professionally, consistent with your brand, and to your customers’ satisfaction.

  • Answering services help you scale your business.

An answering service can help you keep up with demand and provide the care your customers deserve no matter how quickly your business grows.

  • Organize employee reporting and absence management services.

From keeping track of planned and unplanned employee absences to making arrangements for temporary replacements, answering services can also help your business organize absences.

Cons of Outsourcing Answering Services

  • Management has less direct oversight of the answering service functions.

Although this is a positive in many respects, it can be negative if you don’t take an active role in defining your expectations of the answering service at the onset. You will also need to stay in touch with them regularly and request the call metrics and recordings that are meaningful to you.

  • There could be negative effects on staff morale. 

Sometimes, company employees take the idea of any aspect of business being outsourced the wrong way. Communicate clearly to them that the move to outsource telephone answering services will help them grow their expertise and value to the company.

  • Communication challenges may arise.

When you work with any vendor, you add a layer of communication necessary to facilitate and make the most of the relationship. Make certain that you set up staff protocol for communication with your answering service early in the process and make adjustments as necessary.

Is outsourcing your telephone answering services right for your business?

Knowing when to outsource your calls to a call center is simple. Is the productivity of your business in any way diminished by an influx of calls or emails? Could your company answer more calls? Are they often forced to put aside other tasks because of incoming calls? Do you presently have calls, emails, or voicemails that have not been returned? If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, it is time to find out about what Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service can do for you and your company to help you focus on your goals and grow your brand. Contact us today!

 

Source: https://www.pittsburghanswering.com/blog/considering-an-answering-service-the-pros-cons-of-outsourcing/

Publish Date: June 28, 2021 5:00 AM


Marketing Lead Management – How to Leverage an Answering Service for Marketing Campaigns

Excellent marketing campaigns result from research, dedication, and a true understanding of a business’s relationship with its audience. However, the fruits of your labor can quickly disappear if your staff cannot keep up with calls, properly screen prospects and clients, or follow up promptly. Part of any good marketing campaign or year-round marketing effort is having a strategy in place to properly handle all of the leads (phone calls) that result from your campaign. Working with a professional answering service company to be sure that you don’t miss any of those calls can make the difference between gaining sales or losing sales.

How can an answering service maximize your marketing campaign?

As your company grows, so will your call volume. As your call volume increases, your ability to turn calls into new customers can become more challenging. Organizing calls based on importance requires a great deal of time and attention dedicated to lead management. A professional answering service is highly experienced in handling an increase in call volume from marketing campaigns whether they are running for a limited time or running indefinitely. An answering service will also know how to prioritize your needs and help you get to the best leads first, giving you an incredible advantage over your competition.

Wouldn’t hiring more staff be cheaper than hiring an answering service?

Hiring an answering service is much more cost-efficient than hiring employees for a few reasons. If you decide to hire new employees to handle your new business, you will have to dedicate time and resources to the hiring and training process. You will also have to offer a salary, benefits, and paid time off. By hiring an answering service, you do not have to spend extra time and money on any of those things. Our experts have years of customer service experience and come ready to work and improve your lead management. Additionally, when you hire employees, you make them a permanent part of your team, even if you do not always need their assistance. By hiring an answering service, you can scale these services up or down, depending on your needs. The best call answering services are designed to run as a seamless part of your marketing operation as you need assistance. Your live operator team can work 365/24/7 and is fully trained per your specifications for call handling and call routing.

Is hiring an answering service worth it?

Yes! Answering services do not just offer help by answering the phone. We offer an incredible variety of services that get to the bottom of what your business needs. We take pride in our ability to get to know the businesses we assist. Our goal is to become familiar with your needs and seamlessly become the first interaction your clients have. Our agents understand how to provide quality customer service and how to maximize the potential of every call they take on your behalf.

What are other benefits to working with an answering service?

Your answering service operators are supported by the most current telephony software and equipment in the industry. This ensures their efficiency in call answering and routing and facilitates their ability to sync with your systems. They can also sell, cross-sell, conduct research, and cold call for you. This sophisticated equipment works in combination with our service’s quality assurance programs, procedures, and implementation. In addition to offering technology that assists with answering and organizing calls, the right answering service can provide you with the analytics that are particularly important to you in a concentrated marketing effort – or even in your day-to-day efforts. From these, you receive key insights into your customer service operations and sales activities. Your marketing campaigns work hard to deliver the sales results your business needs. Ensure their success by using a top-quality, professional answering service to take all of your call overflow so you never miss a customer contact.

Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service: Your Marketing Calls Experts

Quick increases in call volume should never impede your success. By allowing our team of experts at Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service to handle your marketing lead management, you can effectively maximize your marketing campaigns. We have a team of professionals at your constant disposal to act as a member of your marketing team. We specialize in assisting independent business owners or mobile professionals with small and large businesses. Our professionals know that missed calls can result in lost revenue and dissatisfied clients so we make sure you are covered with a wide array of answering services customized to meet the demands of your specific business - no matter the industry.

Contact us today to find out more about how we can help your business with its marketing lead management efforts.

Source: https://www.pittsburghanswering.com/blog/marketing-lead-management-how-to-leverage-an-answering-service-for-marketing-campaigns/

Publish Date: March 31, 2021 5:00 AM


Continue Reading

Many businesses consider outsourcing their answering services process when they are in growth mode or would like to be. If you are considering outsourcing your business’s call answering services, it’s important to understand the pros and cons of doing so.

Pros of Outsourcing Answering Services

  • Outsourcing answering services is less expensive than hiring staff. Business owners spend tens of thousands of dollars every year hiring and training receptionists, providing workspace and equipment, and paying for their benefits. Outsourcing allows you to save on those costs and benefit from professional operators who are trained specifically to represent your brand as you would do.
  • There is no downtime with answering services. Your customers’ phone calls are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year or just when you need support - you choose what works for you. You don’t need to worry about operators taking vacations or time off for any reason because your calls are always covered.
  • Outsourcing answering services allows your staff to focus on your core business. When your staff only handles the calls that are relevant to them, they are able to effectively focus on other important aspects of your business. At the same time, you know that your customers’ calls are being handled in the most professional manner, consistent with your brand, and to your customers’ satisfaction.

Cons of Outsourcing Answering Services

  • Management has less direct oversight of the answering service functions. Although this is a positive in many respects, it can be a negative if you don’t take an active role in defining your expectations of the answering service at the onset. You will also need to stay in touch with them on a regular basis and request the call metrics that are meaningful to you.
  • There could be negative effects on staff morale. Sometimes, company employees take the idea of any aspect of business being outsourced the wrong way. If you communicate clearly to them that the move to outsource telephone answering services will help them grow their expertise and value to the company.
  • Communications challenges may arise. When you work with any vendor, you add a layer of communication necessary to facilitate and make the most of the relationship. Make certain that you set up staff protocol for communication with your answering service early in the process and make adjustments as necessary.

Is outsourcing your telephone answering services right for your business?

Knowing when to outsource your calls to a call center is simple. Is the productivity of your business in any way diminished by an influx of calls or emails? Could your company answer more calls? Are they often forced to put aside other tasks because of incoming calls? Do you presently have calls, emails or voicemails that have not been returned? If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, it is time to find out about what Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service can do for you and your company to help you focus on your goals and grow your brand. Contact us today!

Source: https://www.pittsburghanswering.com/pros-and-cons-of-outsourcing-answering-services/

Publish Date: March 7, 2019 5:00 AM


Pros and Cons of Outsourcing Answering Services

Many businesses consider outsourcing their answering services process when they are in growth mode or would like to be. If you are considering outsourcing your business’s call answering services, it’s important to understand the pros and cons of doing so.

Pros of Outsourcing Answering Services

  • Outsourcing answering services is less expensive than hiring staff. Business owners spend tens of thousands of dollars every year hiring and training receptionists, providing workspace and equipment, and paying for their benefits. Outsourcing allows you to save on those costs and benefit from professional operators who are trained specifically to represent your brand as you would do.
  • There is no downtime with answering services. Your customers’ phone calls are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year or just when you need support - you choose what works for you. You don’t need to worry about operators taking vacations or time off for any reason because your calls are always covered.
  • Outsourcing answering services allows your staff to focus on your core business. When your staff only handles the calls that are relevant to them, they are able to effectively focus on other important aspects of your business. At the same time, you know that your customers’ calls are being handled in the most professional manner, consistent with your brand, and to your customers’ satisfaction.

Cons of Outsourcing Answering Services

  • Management has less direct oversight of the answering service functions. Although this is a positive in many respects, it can be a negative if you don’t take an active role in defining your expectations of the answering service at the onset. You will also need to stay in touch with them on a regular basis and request the call metrics that are meaningful to you.
  • There could be negative effects on staff morale. Sometimes, company employees take the idea of any aspect of business being outsourced the wrong way. If you communicate clearly to them that the move to outsource telephone answering services will help them grow their expertise and value to the company.
  • Communications challenges may arise. When you work with any vendor, you add a layer of communication necessary to facilitate and make the most of the relationship. Make certain that you set up staff protocol for communication with your answering service early in the process and make adjustments as necessary.

Is outsourcing your telephone answering services right for your business?

Knowing when to outsource your calls to a call center is simple. Is the productivity of your business in any way diminished by an influx of calls or emails? Could your company answer more calls? Are they often forced to put aside other tasks because of incoming calls? Do you presently have calls, emails or voicemails that have not been returned? If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, it is time to find out about what Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service can do for you and your company to help you focus on your goals and grow your brand. Contact us today!

Source: https://www.pittsburghanswering.com/pros-and-cons-of-outsourcing-answering-services/

Publish Date: March 7, 2019 5:00 AM


Top Industries Using Call Answering Services

Virtually any type of business will benefit from the opportunity to always be in touch with customers by using a call answering service. Some industries, in particular, find the services vital to their success. Here are the top industries that use call answering services and an explanation of how each depends on companies that make sure they never miss a call.

How Answering Services Can Help Your Business Within…

Medical Industry

For the medical industry, missing a call may be a life or death matter. Medical professionals use call answering services that are compliant with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to handle a variety of important communication tasks depending on the area they practice in:

 

Medical Practices

  • Appointment scheduling and calls to patients reminding them of upcoming appointments
  • Calls to cancel appointments
  • Patient calls asking to speak with doctors
  • Calls from doctors, hospitals and nursing homes
  • Calls from patients or pharmacies regarding prescriptions or lab work
  • Doctor to doctor consultations
  • Calls regarding patients who are deceased
  • Emergency calls after office hours

 

Nursing Services and Home Healthcare

  • Calls for Individuals
  • Employment inquiries
  • Report-offs from employees
  • Requests for service and referrals from doctors, hospitals, nursing homes or anyone in need of service
  • Inquiries from prospective clients for prices and rates
  • Emergency calls from employees or clients while on assignment
  • Calls from employees regarding their paychecks

 

Home IV Infusions

  • Service inquiries from patients or their families
  • Calls from medical facilities
  • Calls from patients with equipment problems or medical issues

 

Hospice

  • Inquiry calls from potential clients
  • Calls from employees or physicians
  • Employee report-offs
  • Call from facilities referring services

 

Pharmacies

  • Calls from physicians to place prescriptions
  • Requests for refills
  • Calls from medical facilities or from individuals seeking information regarding medications

 

Medical Equipment

  • General calls inquiring about equipment
  • Emergency calls for equipment
  • Billing inquiries

 

HVAC and Plumbing Industries

The HVAC and plumbing industries depend on having access to customer calls 24/7, 365 days a year. Here’s how a call answering service can help:

  • Capture all emergency calls
  • Appointment scheduling
  • Inquiries for service
  • Employee report-offs

 

Property Management and Real Estate Industries

Missing calls is not an option for those who want to succeed in the property management and real estate industries. Call answering services provide assistance with:

  • Calls for Individuals
  • Cancellations of appointments
  • Inquiries about properties that are for sale or rent
  • Calls to view a property again, to put down money or to make an offer on properties that are for sale
  • Calls requesting directions to properties
  • Employee report-offs
  • Calls with offers on rental properties
  • Tenant service calls and complaints
  • After hour emergency calls from tenants
  • Lockouts

 

Legal Industry

Both attorneys and court reporters benefit from call answering services:

Attorneys

  • After-hours calls for services - existing clients as well as potential clients
  • Appointment scheduling
  • Receptionist service 24/7
  • Court calls
  • Daytime overflow support
  • Call screening to qualify prospective clients

 

Court Reporters

  • Requests for depositions or transcripts
  • Calls regarding court dates
  • Calls from court videographers
  • Calls from lawyers, courts and judges

 

Funeral Directors

It is essential that all calls are handled with the highest level of respect, compassion, and urgency in the funeral industry. Call services can help with:

  • Death Calls
  • Calls regarding obituaries
  • Miscellaneous calls regarding copies of death certificates, insurance papers, payment of bills, and advance arrangements
  • Contact information for flowers and cemetery services
  • Call asking for directions
  • Contacting grief counselors on behalf of the families
  • Calls regarding products and services

 

Contractors and Construction Industry

When contractors and others who work in construction miss a call, they likely miss getting business or risk losing what they have. Here’s how call answering services help make certain that doesn’t happen by handling:

  • Sales calls
  • Requests for emergency service
  • Calls from insurance companies
  • Calls from other contractors

 

Government Agencies

Many of the calls that government agencies receive can’t wait to be handled. This is why call answering services support governments by facilitating contact regarding:

  • Utilities (water, electric, etc.)
  • Traffic signals and road signs
  • IT and related infrastructure
  • Road infrastructure (snow plowing, etc.)
  • Building management/courthouses
  • Board of Health inquiries or complaints

 

Insurance Industry

Customers contact insurance companies on a regular basis. To handle the call volume, call answering services assist them with:

  • Calls for Individuals
  • General Inquiries or quote requests
  • Calls regarding claims
  • Auto insurance calls regarding the transfer of cars or getting a new car or adding cars
  • Employee report offs
  • Policy modifications

 

Disaster Restoration Industry

The urgency of calls related to disaster restoration services is clear, which is why companies in this industry depend on call answering services 24/7 to address:

  • Requests for emergency board-ups
  • Calls from insurance companies with referrals
  • Calls regarding water extraction
  • Calls regarding mold remediation
  • Calls regarding smoke damage

 

Transportation Industry

Constant contact between customers and transportation businesses is the norm. Here’s what call answering services do for them:

  • Assist callers seeking travel and transportation-related information
  • Pick-up locations, times and drop off times
  • Schedules and rate information
  • Limo and taxi service

 

Non-Profit and Charities

Over the course of any year, non-profits and charities experience high call numbers multiple times. To make sure that none are lost, they often work with call answering services for help with:

  • Calls offering donations
  • Appointment scheduling
  • Help on applications for volunteers
  • Calls requesting information about events
  • Registrations for events

 

Locksmiths

Most of the calls that locksmiths receive are urgent so their call answering services address:

  • Lockouts: car, office or home
  • Lock or key replacement
  • New client information
  • Billing inquiries

 

Oil and Gas Industry

Urgent contact from customers is routine in the oil and gas industry, which often relies on call answering services to field:

  • 24/7 service inquiries
  • Emergency calls
  • Rental requests

 

Professional and Commercial Services

No matter what business you’re in, a call answering service can facilitate:

  • Customer service calls
  • Sales calls
  • Prospective client inquiries
  • Calls for Individuals
  • Billing questions
  • Calls for parts
  • After-hours emergency service

 

Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service is Right for Your Business

Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service is a virtual receptionist company that provides live telephone answering services that replace the need for voicemail. With us, you have a team of professionals at your constant disposal, acting as your very important virtual personal assistant. We specialize in partnering with independent business owners or mobile professionals with small and large businesses. Missed calls are missed opportunities and can result in lost revenue, dissatisfied customers or a medical emergency left in the balance. PTAS provides a wide array of customized services to meet the demands of multiple industries. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help your business handle your call volume, regardless of the industry.

Source: https://www.pittsburghanswering.com/top-industries-using-call-answering-services/

Publish Date: February 1, 2019 5:00 AM


Plan a Telephone Answering Solution in 2018, Going into 2019

As the new year is quickly approaching, now is a good time to refine your strategy for providing the best service to customers who call your company. With many companies turning to professional telephone answering services, there are numerous technologies that can seamlessly integrate these services with your sales and customer relationship management (CRM) systems in real time.

One vehicle that has emerged as a way to accomplish this is the Application Programming Interface (API). APIs allow for the creation of web-based forms that your telephone answering services company can use to communicate with your systems in real time. Using the API system, their agents can see the parts of your company’s systems that you would like them to see and communicate with, without their having access to the administrative portions of your software and systems. It essentially removes the need to train non-employees on your systems and protects the integrity of your systems and data – as well as that of your customers.

Compare Telephone Answering Solutions

Many companies that provide business software solutions also provide APIs – either in cloud or software form. Following are several vendors to consider:

  • 3Scale- 3scale provides an Out-of-the-Box Cloud API Management Platform & Infrastructure for companies to securely open, control, manage, operate, and monetize their API to 3rd parties (i.e., developers, business partners, etc.).
  • APIphany- APIphany is a reliable API management platform from which the company can manage any API hosted anywhere on the Internet, regardless of implementation technology.
  • Bridge Software – Bridge is a leader in SaaS partner-driven custom API integration services solely dedicated to solving the SaaS integration needs of small businesses.
  • Emergent One- Emergent One is an API platform that allows you to quickly generate and launch a new API from MySQL or Postgres databases connection.
  • Mashery- Mashery’s API management tools and strategic services help companies connect with customers and partners by extending reach across devices, markets, and the web.
  • Nevatech Sentinet- Nevatech Sentinet is a flexible, lightweight, and scalable API management platform that promotes integration through the use of SOA standards. It has the ability to connect, mediate, and manage interactions between services in the cloud or across the business.
  • Tray – Tray’s platform provides organizations with the ability to sync all data, connect deeply into apps, and integrate into any app using its Universal Connector.
  • SAP Cloud Platform – SAP provides the SAP Cloud Platform Integration Suite, which simplifies integration by connecting people, processes, data, and devices everywhere by allowing people with different skills to leverage a wide variety of integration approaches, intuitive tools, and prepackaged content to achieve results faster and gain business agility via an enterprise-grade cloud integration platform.
  • WebServius- WebServius is a self-service tool that allows the user to for deploy, manage, and monetize datasets using an API. WebServius users can integrate and store data and enable access to the data.
  • Alcatel-Lucent- The Alcatel-Lucent Open API Platform (OAP) is an API Monetization and Optimization software solution for service providers. It enables service providers to convert their data and telecommunication infrastructure into a commercial transaction platform.

About Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service

Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service (PTAS) provides live telephone operator and answering services that replace the need for voicemail and increase customer satisfaction. With PTAS on your team, you have professional agents at your constant disposal, acting as your very important virtual personal assistant. At PTAS, we help independent business owners and mobile professionals with small and large businesses with their daily tasks. Missing customer calls can lead to lost revenue from upset customers or for a healthcare professional, it can mean a medical emergency left in the balance. We are able to provide custom solutions that meet the demands of multiple industries.

Contact us today to talk about how we can help you grow your business in 2019 with a call answering solution that integrates seamlessly with your CRM or Sales software.

Source: https://www.pittsburghanswering.com/telephone-answering-solution-2019/

Publish Date: November 28, 2018 5:00 AM


Continue Reading

As the new year is quickly approaching, now is a good time to refine your strategy for providing the best service to customers who call your company. With many companies turning to professional telephone answering services, there are numerous technologies that can seamlessly integrate these services with your sales and customer relationship management (CRM) systems in real time.

One vehicle that has emerged as a way to accomplish this is the Application Programming Interface (API). APIs allow for the creation of web-based forms that your telephone answering services company can use to communicate with your systems in real time. Using the API system, their agents can see the parts of your company’s systems that you would like them to see and communicate with, without their having access to the administrative portions of your software and systems. It essentially removes the need to train non-employees on your systems and protects the integrity of your systems and data – as well as that of your customers.

Compare Telephone Answering Solutions

Many companies that provide business software solutions also provide APIs – either in cloud or software form. Following are several vendors to consider:

  • 3Scale- 3scale provides an Out-of-the-Box Cloud API Management Platform & Infrastructure for companies to securely open, control, manage, operate, and monetize their API to 3rd parties (i.e., developers, business partners, etc.).
  • APIphany- APIphany is a reliable API management platform from which the company can manage any API hosted anywhere on the Internet, regardless of implementation technology.
  • Bridge Software – Bridge is a leader in SaaS partner-driven custom API integration services solely dedicated to solving the SaaS integration needs of small businesses.
  • Emergent One- Emergent One is an API platform that allows you to quickly generate and launch a new API from MySQL or Postgres databases connection.
  • Mashery- Mashery’s API management tools and strategic services help companies connect with customers and partners by extending reach across devices, markets, and the web.
  • Nevatech Sentinet- Nevatech Sentinet is a flexible, lightweight, and scalable API management platform that promotes integration through the use of SOA standards. It has the ability to connect, mediate, and manage interactions between services in the cloud or across the business.
  • Tray – Tray’s platform provides organizations with the ability to sync all data, connect deeply into apps, and integrate into any app using its Universal Connector.
  • SAP Cloud Platform – SAP provides the SAP Cloud Platform Integration Suite, which simplifies integration by connecting people, processes, data, and devices everywhere by allowing people with different skills to leverage a wide variety of integration approaches, intuitive tools, and prepackaged content to achieve results faster and gain business agility via an enterprise-grade cloud integration platform.
  • WebServius- WebServius is a self-service tool that allows the user to for deploy, manage, and monetize datasets using an API. WebServius users can integrate and store data and enable access to the data.
  • Alcatel-Lucent- The Alcatel-Lucent Open API Platform (OAP) is an API Monetization and Optimization software solution for service providers. It enables service providers to convert their data and telecommunication infrastructure into a commercial transaction platform.

About Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service

Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service (PTAS) provides live telephone operator and answering services that replace the need for voicemail and increase customer satisfaction. With PTAS on your team, you have professional agents at your constant disposal, acting as your very important virtual personal assistant. At PTAS, we help independent business owners and mobile professionals with small and large businesses with their daily tasks. Missing customer calls can lead to lost revenue from upset customers or for a healthcare professional, it can mean a medical emergency left in the balance. We are able to provide custom solutions that meet the demands of multiple industries.

Contact us today to talk about how we can help you grow your business in 2019 with a call answering solution that integrates seamlessly with your CRM or Sales software.

Source: https://www.pittsburghanswering.com/telephone-answering-solution-2019/

Publish Date: November 28, 2018 5:00 AM


Communication is Key: Why Large Companies Miss the Mark at Customer Service

Did you know that over 60% of consumers prefer speaking to a live agent rather than an automated system? Large companies often struggle with customer satisfaction because with such a large client-base, it’s nearly impossible to provide quality customer service and brand communication. Small and medium-sized businesses, or SMBs, don’t experience the same demands and therefore can differentiate themselves by allowing customers to seek answers to their questions and information about their accounts in real-time instead of waiting for an email response back from an agent.

Large Companies versus SMBs

It can be difficult for a large company to connect directly to each of their customers and maintain the same entrepreneurial spirit they started with once they operate at a large scale. This gives SMBs quite a competitive edge over larger companies. However, this can become tricky as customers have that expectation and often choose a business that operates on a smaller scale because they want closer contact and better customer satisfaction. This also poses a challenge to medium-sized companies who experience several demands but rely on positive public relations to retain their client base. Thus, having a call answering service where you can be reached should be the goal of every company that strives to connect with their customer base.

With an answering service, you won’t ever have to miss a call because you were busy helping a customer in-store, managing employees or completing any of the other hundreds of tasks SMB owners are confronted with. Spend time focusing on critically important tasks that you are constantly faced with and leave the call answering to a call answering service.

Properly equipped call answering services can make things as personalized as any SMB may need; from personalized scripts to custom messaging, call answering services can be made to fit the precise needs of any company. By outsourcing customer calls to a call answering service who is properly equipped, businesses can easily save time by not having to manage calls or train employees with proper call answering protocol. Having a dedicated team taking care of calls will provide customers with the individualized attention they crave and seek and will ultimately strengthen customer satisfaction and brand communication.

Are you the owner of a small- or medium-sized business looking to keep your customers happy? Regardless of your industry or field, contact Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service today to discuss the answering service options available to provide your customers with optimal customer service, 24/7.

Source: https://www.pittsburghanswering.com/communication-is-key-smb-customer-service/

Publish Date: September 12, 2018 5:00 AM


How do IT, Manufacturing and Retail Businesses Improve Customer Service Efficiency?

Call answering solutions go through various dispositions to understand the call volume, level of importance of the call, and where the call should be queued. Should the call route directly to the associate or forward to the telephone answering service for a later response? The infographic below outlines the call flow.

Customer Service in the Informational Technology Business

Technology has vastly improved how we live; however, new users often have questions. IT questions from customers can range from minor problems to intricate issues that quickly become very technical. Regardless of the issue, IT customer calls are usually paired with frustration which can escalate if not handled properly. Many IT developers are confronted with the challenge of balancing time, efforts and personnel between creating new products and customer support. Properly handling a frustrated caller by knowing how to identify the level of importance for each call and knowing where a call should be queued can drastically improve an IT business’ call flow by managing calls and ensuring that calls are answered quickly and correctly. This, in turn, provides developers more time and attention to focus on creating and enhancing products.

Manufacturing Businesses

Customer satisfaction is perhaps the most critical component to the success of a manufacturing business. A large factor in ensuring customer satisfaction deals with not only properly handling the answering of calls but also maintaining a positive brand identity. Preserving a positive brand identity starts with customer interactions. By outsourcing customer support calls to a call answering service that is experienced in providing stellar customer service, manufacturing businesses save time by not having to manage calls or needing to train employees on proper call flow and call management. This also ensures that customers will speak positively of their experience and help strengthen their brand loyalty in addition to acquiring loyalty from customers’ family and acquaintances.

Retail Businesses

Online shopping has presented retail businesses with new challenges on managing calls. Call flow patterns are rapidly changing as online customers are not able to ask questions about products at the point of purchase. These challenges are creating growing demands for superb customer support and immediacy in finding answers. In the age of busy schedules, instant gratification, and constant urgency, retailers are often faced with customers who want to address their questions or complaints with speed and accuracy. A telephone answering service knows how to manage calls properly and create a call flow pattern that will best meet the specific needs of varied retailers.

As an experienced answering service, at Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service, we train all of our representatives thoroughly to help them understand how to better assist your callers. The goal is always to have the caller feel so well taken care of that they believe they are speaking to a member of your own team. If you are interested in discussing the services available to your IT, manufacturing or retail business, contact Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service today.

Source: http://www.pittsburghanswering.com/industry-customer-service-efficiency/

Publish Date: July 23, 2018 5:00 AM


Benefits of Call Answering Service by Outsourcing to Trained Specialists

An area that commonly needs a little more attention from business owners is catching up with missed or unanswered calls and emails and finding new ways to keep up with clients and vendors. If your company is being weighed down with missed calls, unanswered voicemails or emails piling up quicker than you can answer them, maybe it’s time to consider a spring cleaning for your call answering services. Don’t have the time to do so? Outsourcing call answering services to a call center might be right for your business, whether you’re a construction company, plumber or accounting firm.

Hiring a call center is an easy and effective solution to outsourcing old missed calls and emails as well organize new calls and emails that come in. Many businesses find that hiring a receptionist who can tackle every call effectively, patiently and correctly is not easy, as receptionists often end up handling additional tasks such as greeting guests and directing visitors. Receptionists also mean wages, benefits and a workspace; businesses typically spend tens of thousands of dollars on hiring someone to answer the phone, save and outsource! No matter how experienced they may be, hiring a new receptionist will also require hours of training for your specific business; training new hires can mean 30 or more hours of paid training time as well as first-time errors. By outsourcing calls, you not only guarantee that your calls will be answered by a trained call-answering specialist, but you will not fall behind in getting back to your clients, vendors, etc. while spending less.

Knowing when to outsource your calls to a call center is simple. Is the productivity of your business in any way diminished by an influx of calls or emails? Are your employees bogged down with unanswered calls? Are they often forced to put aside other tasks because of incoming calls? Do you presently have calls, emails or voicemails that have not been returned? If you answered yes to any of those questions then investing in an answering service might just be the spring cleaning routine your business needs most to be more successful.

Contact our team at Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service today to discuss the best approach for a spring cleaning of your business’s calls. Our team of experienced, professional telephone representatives is ready to help you succeed!

Source: http://www.pittsburghanswering.com/benefits-of-outsourcing-call-answering/

Publish Date: June 22, 2018 5:00 AM


Spring into Action with Call Cleaning

Do you have ideas on how to bring about fresh changes to your business now that spring is here? An area that commonly needs a little more attention from business owners is catching up with missed or unanswered calls and emails and finding new ways to keep up with clients and vendors. If your company is being weighed down with missed calls, unanswered voicemails or emails piling up quicker than you can answer them, maybe it’s time to consider a spring cleaning for your business practices. Don’t have the time to do so? Outsourcing call answering services to a call center might be right for your business, whether you’re a construction company, plumber or accounting firm.

Hiring a call center is an easy and effective solution to outsourcing old missed calls and emails as well as organize new calls and emails that come in. Many businesses find that hiring a receptionist who can tackle every call effectively, patiently and correctly is not easy, as receptionists often end up handling additional tasks such as greeting guests and directing visitors. Receptionists also mean wages, benefits and a workspace; instead of spending funds on hiring someone to answer the phone, consider saving money by outsourcing calls to an answering service. No matter how experienced they may be, hiring a new receptionist will also require hours of training for your specific business; training new hires can mean 30 or more hours of paid training time as well as first-time errors. By outsourcing calls, you not only guarantee that your calls will be answered by a trained call-answering specialist, but you will not fall behind in getting back to your clients, vendors, etc. while spending less.

Knowing when to outsource calls to a call center is simple. Is the productivity of your business in any way diminished by an influx of calls or emails? Are your employees bogged down with unanswered calls? Are they often forced to put aside other tasks because of incoming calls? Do you presently have calls, emails or voicemails that have not been returned? If you answered yes to any of those questions then investing in outsourcing calls to an answering service might just be the spring cleaning routine your business needs most to be more successful.

Contact our team at Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service today to discuss the best approach for a spring cleaning of your business’s calls. Our team of experienced, professional telephone representatives is ready to help you succeed!

Spring into Action with Call Cleaning

  • Clean up call answering services by outsourcing to trained specialists
  • Improve efficiency by outsourcing message organizing
  • Save money by not paying additional salaries, benefits, taxes, and more
  • Employees spend an average of 33 hours training new employees
    • Virtual receptionists don’t require training
  • Save money on equipment and resources such as a phone system, computers, printers, fax machines and more
  • Help alleviate unnecessary multi-tasking
  • Reduce the risk of unanswered or poorly answered calls

Source: http://www.pittsburghanswering.com/spring-call-cleaning/

Publish Date: April 24, 2018 5:00 AM


7 Strategies to Increase Answering Service Operational Performance

Does your business need to improve call answering and operational performance? It is important to implement new strategies that include developing metrics that focus on optimization efforts.   For example, if you are looking to evaluate the lead quality of a new ad campaign, it is important to establish a baseline of calls first. After that, you will be able to compare how many more calls were answered, and the disposition of the calls, to determine your return on investment.

Below are some strategies to increase your company’s answering service operational performance:

    1. Tracking Calls

      Operational performance can be analyzed by tracking the nature, timing, and purpose behind calls. Focus on establishing baselines to understand how many calls are coming in relative to new campaigns you launch. Keeping track of this call information will lead to better targeting.

    2. Prioritize Customer Feedback

      Customer feedback provides opportunities to improve and should be prioritized and properly documented.  Dismissing customer feedback or misusing it can stifle improvement in operational performance.

    3. Eliminate Hold Time and Abandoned Calls

      Decreasing hold time is a very important consideration in improving operational performance. Shortening hold times and eliminating abandoned calls should be a priority to improve operational performance. Eliminating hold time and abandoned calls directly impacts customer satisfaction and should be a priority on any company’s answering service improvement plan. Some businesses have been able to accomplish this by employing a call-back solution or even by making it a habit to proactively inform customers of hold times.

    4. Customer Retention

      Customers prefer answering service agents to automated features because they are able to receive a direct answer as quickly as possible. Seeing that almost 80% of callers prefer speaking to an answering service agent instead of an automated system, it is important to also consider skills and traits answering service agents should employ to provide excellence in operational performance.

    5. Connect Agent Training to Real On-the-Job Scenarios

      Often, the training phase does not provide candidates with exposure to real-life scenarios such as frustrated customers. Be sure to properly prepare employees by exposing them to scenarios that model real on-the-job experiences.

    6. Teach Multi-Tasking Skills

      Successful answering service employees have one skill in common: the ability to multi-task. Answering services can improve operational performance by teaching multi-tasking skills, such as a combination of communication skills, data input, and using reference materials.

    7. Utilize Technology

      An effective way of increasing operational performance is to implement call answering technology. Advanced routing, courtesy call-backs, cloud-based tech and reporting tools are all effective in assisting answering service agents with providing faster feedback and better-organized customer information.

If your business is struggling with improving the performance of your answering service and is looking to outsourcing this important component of your daily operations, call Pittsburgh Telephone Answering Service today. Our years of experience partnered with your expertise in your industry will make for a winning combination.

Source: http://www.pittsburghanswering.com/answer-service-performance-strategies/

Publish Date: March 22, 2018 5:00 AM

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