Q. What separates Time Communications’ call center service from other answering service providers?
A. Time Communications is more than a 24/7 answering service. We provide our call center clients with a wide variety of services. Our call answering statistics are at the top of the answering service industry—average time to answer, time on hold, length of calls, abandoned calls, etc. We are able to deliver this level of call center service because of the enthusiasm, quality, courtesy, professionalism and accuracy of our employees. We are committed to implementing the latest call center technology in order to provide our clients with the best call center service experience possible. We record all calls and save those records for three years.
Q. How long has Time Communications provided inbound call center services?
A. Time Communications has provided call answering services for clients for more than 40 years. Established in 1972, we’re proud to be a long-time leader in the answering service and call center industry.
Q. Does Time Communications support 24/7 call answering needs?
A. Time Communications representatives are available for 24/7 answering service needs, 365 days a year.
Q. Where does Time Communications provide services?
A. We have the ability to provide services nationwide.
Q. Where is Time Communications located?
A. Time Communications is a U.S.-based answering service and call center in Minnesota. Our main office is in Minneapolis / St. Paul and we have a second office in Perham, Minnesota, where Arvig, our parent company’s headquarters are located. We are lucky to be in the midst of a talented, professional workforce, so we can hire the best call center representatives available.
Q. What happens to your answering service and call center systems in an emergency situation (a power outage for example.)?
A. We have daily and weekly backups scheduled in-house for our server and virtual environment; additionally, our internal backups are validated twice a year. Our entire environment is UPS protected, with scheduled battery replacement, and we also have a backup generator that is tested once a week. Lastly, we have 2 separate Internet providers so that our staff can continue to take calls in the event one of them is experiencing issues.
Q .Do you have reserve answering service staffing available for immediate response to spikes in call volume?
A. Yes. Our unique “at-home” program allows us to add staff at a moment’s notice. Our supervisors monitor call activity constantly, on a real-time basis and are able to react immediately when more telephone answering service coverage is needed.
Q. What if my call-handling procedures change? How is this relayed to your Customer Service Representatives?
A. Our call center and answering service representative training program is one of the things that sets us apart from other call center service providers. And, we encourage clients to participate in the education process if they’d like. This commitment to ongoing training makes changing to your call-handling procedures is a snap and can be implemented seamlessly.
Q. Would your Customer Service Representatives have access to my web site?
A. Yes. Incoming calls can be processed directly on your web site if you so choose. Our customer service representatives can even facilitate an online chat with potential customers who are viewing your web site and have questions.
Q. Will you answer the phones with my company’s name?
A. Yes. Each of our clients is provided with their own phone number, which allows our customer representatives to answer your inbound calls with your company name. In addition, our answering service and call center technology ensures that your call handling instructions appear on the representative’s computer screen as the call is delivered so they have all the information needed to provide your customers with outstanding customer service. In fact, your callers don’t have to know that an answering service or call center is answering your calls unless you want them to.
Q. How is my rotating on-call schedule, for emergency call processing, presented to your Customer Service Representatives?
A. We use a unique on-call scheduling system that allows you to create, and even change your on-call schedule on the fly just by accessing the Internet. Scheduling changes occur in real-time directly on our customer service representatives’ screens. This eliminates the possibility of dispatch errors, and gives you great freedom to make changes as needed.
Your own staff can view this schedule over the Internet as well, at any time, but of course only those with the correct log-in and password can make any changes to the schedule.
Q. How can I receive my messages taken by your Customer Service Representatives?
A. There are many message retrieval options available—email, fax, two-way messaging, Internet, .wav files, SMS text messaging, cell phones, voice mail, FTP, Bulletin Board—you name it, we can probably do it!
Q. What information will I see when I receive a message?
A. Your message can be customized to your request and will include all pertinent information such as the time the call was taken, the initials of the Customer Service Representative who took the call, how and when it was delivered, and a record of the call escalation process.
Q. Can I create my own answering service script?
A. Yes. The call answering format our Customer Service Representatives follow for your calls is developed by you, although we can help if you desire. Line-by-line call answering scripting can even be created. Our customer care team and programmers are available to offer any assistance in this area as well.
Q. Do you offer reports that assist in evaluating my calls?
A. Our system has many built-in, commonly requested reports. Call Detail Reports, Account Traffic Reports, Dial-Out Detail Reports, Management Reports and ANI (caller ID) Reports are all available to you. In addition, we will gladly work with you to customize reports you may need or find helpful.
Q. I am new to this and am not quite sure how my calls should be managed. Is there anyone available to assist me?
A. Our Communications Consultants and Programmers will work closely with you, making sure the information you desire is gathered, and presented, in a way that best suits your needs. We have decades of experience in the call answering service business and are happy to assist.
Q. I am very happy with my in-house phone system, but it does not allow for a live operator after-hours. What can I do?
A. Our answering service system can be programmed to duplicate what your current system already does, but with the addition of a live operator option. This includes up-front greetings, connections to individual’s voice mail, staff directories, etc.
Q. Am I charged a fee to retrieve my messages?
A. In most cases, no. We have developed a free “Check-In Line,” which allows you to access your messages by dialing in and providing your account number and pass code to access your messages.