43 post(s)

Day-to-day decisions for many companies can monopolize the energy of its key decision makers. Carving out the time to consider your higher level strategic view that could fundamentally impact the direction of a business takes a strict discipline and a strong determination. However, when this is accomplished, the rewards and long-term benefits make the effort so worthwhile. Take for instance the critical decision of whether or not to outsource your call center or call answering requirements. Here are top 4 reasons why you might consider outsourcing: 1. Cost savings: Outsourcing to vendors that specialize in a given function create efficiencies. It also reduces or, in some cases, eliminates the need to create and maintain the IT infrastructure needed to perform, manage and track these activities. That alone is enough for many to make outsourcing a priority. 2. Reducing staffing requirements: This is of particular importance for companies that experience demand fluctuations where having to increase or decrease staff (or worst, hold on to...

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Today a municipality must fulfil a number of responsibilities in order to give its residents the best possible quality of life. From coordinating everything from snow clearing to the repair of street lights, municipalities have a never-ending list of things to do, often on a tight budget. Communicating with, and responding to citizens inquiries should be at the top of the list. There are many reasons that municipalities get calls after hours, even under optimal conditions. These may range from critical emergencies, such as water main breaks and flooding or animal control issues, to the more routine, such as questions about garbage and recycling collection. How do you ensure that emergencies are dealt with immediately, but routine messages are dealt with but with a less sense of urgency? What may be surprising is that many municipalities, regardless of their size, are not equipped to best support a high volume of calls. Often, most calls end up being fielded by a single person, sometimes...

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From the small business to online retailers, there is nothing like the holiday season to get people in the “store” and drive revenue. With this season quickly approaching, many businesses are getting their ducks in a row. The unfortunate fact of the holidays is that it is the one point where customer loyalty goes out the window, and no matter what your relationship with your customers is like, they will go elsewhere if you can’t meet their needs. If this is a situation that you’re familiar with, you may be interested in exploring what an order-taking service could do for you. Despite the staggering revenue per year in online sales, many customers would prefer a live voice, or run in to issues during the online purchase and need assistance to complete the sale. Order-taking is a service offered by most call answering and call centre service providers. While a call answering service answers all calls and helps the caller with whatever they may...

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Recently, one of our team members, Laura Fudge, attended the 2016 Canadian Society of Safety Engineering conference. Here is the first part of her account of the event. This year marks the third year in a row I have attended the annual conference for the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering (CSSE), which took place in Vancouver, British Columbia, from September 18th to the 21st. As a supplier of employee monitoring and emergency response solutions through Telelink's emergency response centre, I initially started attending the conference as a way of networking and gaining a deeper understanding of the challenges safety professionals faced with lone workers, drivers and mitigating losses during an emergency event. This year, there were several sessions that shared some great insights and lessons learned from some of the world’s most safety-focused organizations. It would be impossible for me to highlight everything I learned, but let me share a few tidbits that really hit home with me. The BC Safety Authority, joined...

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Telelink was recently awarded the 2016 Award of Excellence by CAM-X, the industry trade association for call answering services and call centres, at their week-long convention and trade show in Quebec City, Quebec. This is the 13th consecutive year that we have won this award, and while some companies may be content to rest on their laurels – if they are winning awards, they must be doing well, or so the thinking goes – at Telelink, we use every win to motivate ourselves further into providing the best possible service for our customers. Awards are certainly nice to get, though we feel they should serve a purpose beyond recognition or marketing. One of the most important ways awards matter is that they allow companies to benchmark against industry standards. Customers’ expectations are constantly changing, and what may have been award-winning efforts in previous years simply may not hold up to current standards. Winning awards consecutively is a demonstration that a business is keeping...

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Safety monitoring: unless you are in a specific part of a large operation, or your business heavily involves transporting materials or having unsupervised workers in the field, it’s a practice that you more than likely haven’t put much thought into. While it’s true that not every business is required by law to have a safety monitoring solution, there are plenty of choices available for those that do. Is safety monitoring right for your business, and if it is, would having an in-house or third-party emergency response centre solution be more advantageous? Why do you need safety monitoring? Jim owns a cargo trucking company, and on any given day, one of his employees could be transporting any number of things, including materials that could be considered hazardous. Jim is also a new father, and knows that quite a few of his employees are parents as well. This new life experience has brought Jim to consider the importance of him, and all of his employees,...

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To put the sector in rather romantic terms, blue-collar work is the foundation upon which the American Dream was built, and the various trades that make up the umbrella of blue-collar work remain extremely significant today. While technology has significantly changed the way that such jobs are performed, a strong demand for tradespeople remains, whether they are plumbers and electricians or woodworkers and blacksmiths. Does the modern tradesperson have to juggle too many things in order to deliver results that both they – and their customers – can be proud of, and how might utilizing a call answering service be able to help them achieve their goals? Doing More Means Getting Less Done If a tradesperson is significantly busy, they may not have the time to devote to building and maintaining strong relationships. A contractor receiving multiple calls for work requests while they’re on a job site may mean that they won’t have the ability to pay as much attention to their work...

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While having emergency and safety procedures are vital for all businesses and mandatory for most, there is not much incentive to ensure their continued maintenance. As time passes, a company’s structure will be rearranged - employees will be assigned to new roles, and it’s reasonable to assume some staff turnover. The excitement may wear off, but it’s vitally important to keep a company’s emergency response plan up to date. Even with procedures in place, the absence of a few people can dramatically alter the effectiveness of a response. What Should My Emergency Plan Contain? A critical part of an emergency response plan is a risk assessment, when is intended to identify potential hazards, as well as analyze the results of a hazard occurring. Such hazards could run the gamut from tornado, hurricane, or some other act of nature, to incidents like gas leaks and burst pipes, to name a few. When someone thinks of creating an emergency response plan, they may primarily think...

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When it comes to offering great customer service, no company should be content with their customers simply having a good experience. The ultimate goal is to exceed the customer’s expectations, but it’s also important that those expectations be realistic and affordable. Unless you’ve established precedent through use of an automated system, there’s little reason customers should expect to have their calls answered immediately. While it will vary on a case-by-case basis, a business should aim to answer a single question - how long is too long? Establish an Appropriate Framework Depending on the type of industry, callers may be more lenient when it comes to longer wait times. For example, there are traditionally longer wait times for airlines and credit card companies. This suggests that people are more willing to be patient when it comes to things they find important. The truth is, however, that no one likes being put on hold for longer than is necessary. It’s a certainty that everyone has...

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The phrase “Incident Command System” may sound complicated without context, but it has emerged over the last 50 years to be the standard for the command, control, and coordination of emergency response efforts. Here in Newfoundland, ICS training is performed through Fire & Emergency Services, and all municipalities are required to not only be trained in the system but also to have an Emergency Management Plan in place. Our curiosity about the system was stoked when we noticed that many of our emergency-centric clients use ICS. Here’s what we found out. What is ICS? ICS is a standardized on-scene incident management concept designed specifically to allow responders to adapt an integrated organizational structure equal to the complexity and demands of any single incident or multiple incidents without being hindered by jurisdictional boundaries. ICS is normally structured to facilitate activities in five major functional areas: command, operations, planning, logistics, intelligence & investigations, and finance & administration. The purpose of ICS is to enable incident...

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