Although the vast majority of companies still rely on internal employees, nowadays it’s not uncommon for business owners to outsource certain tasks like data entry to freelancers. This approach has given way to virtual assistants who, despite not being physically present in the office, can reduce the workload of internal employees by taking on more mundane tasks like handling incoming and outbound calls.
For many years, however, this was a logistical nightmare for companies and assistants alike, since they had to inconveniently swap calls between one another, not to mention that clients would immediately spot when they were ‘passed’ to an outsider. Thankfully, with a VoIP system on board, none of these problems persist. In fact, there are many features to help boost the cooperation between contracting companies and virtual assistants, ultimately resulting in a pleasant experience for both parties.
Being Part of the System
One of the reasons businesses prefer VoIP over traditional phone systems is that cloud solutions are scalable since the system’s admin can assign extensions to users with a few clicks, while users only need a phone that can connect to the internet. Translated to the relationship between businesses and virtual assistants, this means that freelancers can simply join the business’s phone system by signing into their own account either from a computer or from a dedicated smartphone app.
Another huge advantage of being part of the same VoIP system is that assistants can effectively separate personal phone calls from business-related ones. Additionally, they can initiate calls in the name of the business, while clients calling in won’t even notice that they are actually talking to a freelancer thanks to the seamless call routing feature that all VoIP solutions come with.
And when they join the system, freelancing virtual assistants get access to free, two-way communication channels – namely conferencing bridges and business texting – through which they can keep in touch with the contracting business at all times. This is essential in facilitating a successful collaboration between the company and its contracted virtual assistants.
Tailored to Help Virtual Assistants
Though being part of the very same phone system used by in-house employees is already a huge asset for contracted virtual assistants, it’s actually the enterprise-grade features that make VoIP worthwhile. In fact, some of these features in particular can significantly reduce the workload of virtual assistants while at the same time helping them to become more effective in their jobs.
Often called the virtual receptionist, this feature is based on the so-called interactive voice response menu that can be programmed to allow callers to direct themselves to the right person by pressing the corresponding keys on their phones. The auto-attendant can take the vast majority of calls, providing an effective screening method for virtual assistants who can then focus on other, more important tasks instead of constantly directing callers to employees. What’s more impressive, however, is that auto-attendants can be customized in such a way that they can greet and automatically forward callers to either employees or voicemail based on criteria like the time of the day or the caller’s ID.
Since being constantly available – at least during work hours – is of utmost importance for any business, automated call forwarding can be a lifesaver for virtual assistants. Depending on the setting, incoming calls can be forwarded to everyone in the system, to a specific ring group – the virtual assistants, for instance – or to one person at a time in a sequential order. Regardless, the point is that calls are never left unattended, meaning that if one virtual assistant is unable to take the call – due to being away or occupied – then someone else will definitely receive the call.
Integration With Other Business Solutions
The beauty of cloud solutions is that they can be integrated into each other to partially or fully automate certain tasks, and cloud phone systems aren’t an exception to this either. Admittedly, integration options are limited to just CRMs and it’s actually the VoIP solution that is integrated into the other software in the form of a softphone add-on. However, this way freelancing virtual assistants can easily register new clients or identify recurring callers and therefore provide a consistent service to them.
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