Can your phone system handle these five common December issues?

Christmas is a fantastic time of year for most of us, with all the food, presents and precious time with loved ones. For many of us it’s very busy too; hospitality and tourism businesses are swamped by people wanting some festive fun, doctors’ surgeries are busy with people suffering winter ailments, while eCommerce businesses can struggle to keep up with all the orders people are making for Christmas presents.

Is your phone system up to it? A VoIP phone system is designed with plenty of functionality and tools to make your life that little bit easier — here are five common issues in December and the lead up to Christmas that a new phone system could make easier.

  1. Lower staff numbers

There tends to be two big reasons staff are off in December; one is through staff taking annual leave late in the year, while the other is winter illness. Yet the phone still keeps on ringing with enquiries though, which can be tough for the staff left holding the fort. How do you handle all of the calls with less people?

Hunt groups is one good answer; it allows for phones to be grouped together, so when someone rings that group, each of the phones connected rings. Grouping means the call is still answered, even if a member of that group is away.

An alternative is call forwarding, which allows callers to be forwarded through to another number at the call of a button, all with minimal fuss and faff.

  1. Higher call volumes

Every business has busy seasons; for doctors, that means surgery phones ringing off the hook in winter with people who are ill, while for pubs and restaurants it means people calling up to make bookings for Christmas meals out. So how do you handle the excess number of calls you’re suddenly getting?

An auto attendant can help filter calls and ensure they’re going to the right places. It helps to make sure that one member of staff isn’t having to deal with every single call.

  1. Abnormal working hours

Lots of places close up for Christmas Day and Boxing Day, so it’s important to let your customers or clients know when you’re going to be closed up for Christmas.

So how are you going to handle these different opening hours? If your surgery or business is closing its doors for Christmas, then it’s important you communicate this to those that are going to be calling you. A VoIP phone system easily allows you to record and switch on an automated message when someone rings, allowing you to easily update them on surgery opening hours.

  1. There’s still an emergency

If your staff need to be contacted in an emergency, no matter when it is, your phone system should allow you to handle this scenario however you want; you can provide the phone number of the person on call in a pre-recorded message, or make it easier for those calling by allowing call forwarding at the push of a button on their phone to be transferred to the emergency number. A VoIP system allows all this with minimal fuss.

  1. Bad weather stops people getting in to work

What do you do if bad weather hits and lots of your employees are left stranded at home? Well VoIP allows for calls to be diverted to their mobile phone, so calls are always answered, no matter where they are. VoIP handsets can also be taken from the office and plugged in to an internet connection at home, so employees can take their handset with them and work from home.

VoIP is amazing for a wide variety of reasons, and these functions will prove useful all year round; to talk to our experienced and local team, please give us a call here at Equations on 01237 420010.

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