Telephone answering in kennels? It’s a dog’s life
If you have a dog – or you know someone with a canine companion – there’s a good chance you treat your pet like royalty. In many cases this pampering will include occasional trips to kennels. Like many businesses, kennels have call volumes that are highly variable as you will know if you have ever tried to contact one at peak times!
This blog outlines why kennels, medical practitioners and tradespeople gain significant benefits from telephone answering services.
Call volumes are highly variable
Most organisations experience peaks and troughs in call volumes. For B2C services like family law practices, the peak may come at lunchtime when clients have some ‘quiet time’ to call. Estate agents are often busy on Saturday mornings. Many of Paperclip’s medical therapy clients, like osteopaths, rarely receive many calls after 3pm. It’s a really interesting and informative exercise to track and analyse your organisation’s call volumes, particularly if your phone system reports on missed calls.
Telephone calls to kennels, in simple terms, tend to fall into two categories: calls relating to to visits planned well in advance, and last minute ‘emergency’ requirements. This variability in call volumes makes it difficult in terms of manpower planning should the kennel wish to have sufficient receptionists on duty to ensure no calls are missed.
This last point is important. Most dog owners are loyal to their preferred kennels but, when it is an urgent last-minute requirement, they will often move on to their second or third choice if nobody picks up the phone.
Have you lost clients because of a missed call? Have you changed supplier because nobody was able to handle your enquiry?
Using a call answering services provider enables you to capture enquiries and bookings from new clients and, probably even more importantly, ensures the retention of existing loyal clients. Business coaches say that a really powerful growth strategy is to ‘take your competition out of the market’. Ensuring customer calls are answered is fundamental to this approach.
Answering the phone is not ‘top priority’!
This statement may appear to contradict the earlier point about the importance of answering all calls. However, people working in kennels tend to be there because they absolutely love dogs. They would much rather be looking after the dogs – watering, feeding and exercising them – than answering the phone.
This situation is true for many of Paperclip’s telephone answering service clients. Whether they are an osteopath in Sheffield, an estate agent in Derby, or a solicitor in Nottingham, many clients prefer to focus on delivering their core skill or service and leave the telephone answering and admin to a third party.
There is no such thing as a ‘normal’ day without distractions
In kennels the focus is on the wellbeing of the canine guests: feeding, watering, walking. All these activities can be planned for. However, there are many unplanned ‘incidents’ that drag staff away from reception duties. For example, several dogs being collected by their owners at the same time or an unexpected visit to the vet.
When combined with the ‘top priority’ comment above, it is easy to see why it can be difficult to contact your kennels when you want to make a reservation.
Even in businesses with dedicated reception personnel, there are frequent unplanned distractions: illness, influx of visitors, administrative duties, ‘all hands to the pump’. Some of Paperclip’s largest clients such as solicitors, estate agents, and IT support companies prefer to focus their reception staff on looking after visitors and administrative tasks and engage Paperclip to handle some or all of their incoming phone calls.
This approach ensures calls are answered quickly and professionally. Furthermore, the detailed statistical reporting provided by the call answering software and regular update meetings with the Paperclip team enable the client to better manage its front of house activities.
Feel as though you have a dog’s life? Paperclip can help. To find out more contact us on 01246 418181 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Outstanding. We used Paperclip Admin to cover maternity leave in our company, they were friendly, professional and efficient. We found their phone answering service very helpful when we were unable to take calls ourselves.
John Owen, County Conveyors