! I am new to this forum and have read a lot of threads from here so I thought I would contribute. I started my HVAC company a few years ago when I graduated from a community college in Columbus, Ohio. My HVAC company, Ben's HVAC, started out strong but I realized that since I wasn't operating 24-7 I was losing out on a lot of business.
I finally decided to hire a secretary to take evening/late night calls so that we could operate 24-7 in case there were a sales call that were to come in during after hours (after 5p). This really helped out and business really started to pick up, the only problem was that it was expensive to pay my secretary to work those hours when we were only receiving a hand full of calls per night.
3 months later we decided to let the secretary go because we couldn't afford to employ her for the sole purpose of answering calls.
I started doing some research to find out what other companies do to handle their calls after hours and asked some of my competitors what they were using. I quickly learned about call center outsourcing and how that will allow me to operate 24-7 without having to pay near as much as I was for a secretary.
These are just a few of the benefits I found from using a call center:
1. Most call centers or answering services have generators and back up systems that can sustain the office in case of crisis. This allows my business to operate even if the power goes out. This is GREAT! especially living in Ohio where there are crazy ice storms and other weather problems that can take out power.
2. Customer service. Friendly customer service really adds a nice touch to any business and helps keep clients coming back.
3. I get text msg alerts when a HVAC request comes in. I don't even have to call in to my call center I just get the txt of the address, name, problem etc. and I am off to the next client.
4. AFFORDABLE. This really makes a huge difference and the money I spend on this makes it an easy bill to pay.
As a strong believer that we shouldn't be outsourcing to other countries I really found it important to do my research on call centers and answering services in the United States. Lucky for me I actually found my call center located in Columbus, Ohio.
I think a lot of businesses out there don't realize or know how huge a call center can make your business grow.