A virtual receptionist, or VR, is the automated answering system that can help you navigate inbound calls. People are becoming virtual students, remote employees, and online shoppers in today’s world, and they are expecting more options for contacting your business without visiting. Therefore, you should make sure your virtual services, such as your VR, are up to date.
In short, your options start with a basic VR that allows you to record a single message that is not based on your schedule. Then, an advanced VR gives you the option to tailor the service to your business hours, schedule, and any manual overrides you need to make. Finally, many companies, such as VoiceNation, offer live receptionist services where a trained professional answers your phones and directs your calls. Here is a how-to guide for navigating the different VR options so you can reap these benefits for your business.
Add and Set Up a Basic VR
The first step to purchasing a VR is to find a provider. Once you have one, you will need to choose your VR and start setting it up. Your first option is going to be the basic VR. To choose this, add it to your account and start setting up your service. To start, you will need to enter your phone number, extensions, location and select whether you want clients to be automatically directed to the VR or have the option to dial a person directly. Then, you are going to need to decide whether you want a directory menu. If you decide you want one, you will need to select the numbers to press that allow callers to navigate your menu, speak to an operator, repeat options, return to a different menu, dial by name, or bypass a certain step. The last step is to choose your VR messages. Generic recordings will likely be available for you to choose from. You can also record your own for a more personalized experience. After finishing this, you are set up with a basic VR.
Add and Set Up an Advanced VR
If you are looking for an advanced VR, you are going to start the same way. First, you will need to choose a provider. Then, you will need to look for and select their advanced VR option. Once you have purchased the option, you will need to set up your service. To start, you will need to enter your phone number, extensions, and location. With an advanced VR, your next step will be to enter your business schedule and choose the messages you want to play. Note, this VR will be active when your business is open. That means it will always try to direct your calls to a live operator. However, you will often be given the option to add a second VR for your out-of-office needs. This can be set up for when you are closed, and it will establish how off-hours calls are dealt with. Once you finish this step, your advanced VR will be complete.
Modify an Existing VR
To modify an existing VR, you should visit your provider’s website. Like with setup, you will usually be able to accomplish your modifications online. To start, choose the VR that you want to modify, then make any changes necessary. Most of the time, you will be given the option to delete the VR, copy your settings, edit your settings, or implement a manual override.
Set Up Out-of-Office Options
The most common out-of-office option that people set up is a scheduled manual override for extended time off. This can be set up to provide customers with a new greeting or send them directly to a different extension. You should be able to do this in your portal by enabling a manual override. First, you can schedule it by choosing the date and time the override starts and ends. Then, you will need to select how calls are routed or greeted. Note, the abilities of your manual override are different if you have a basic or advanced VR.
At the end of the day, you need to make sure your calls are properly directed and handled. Therefore, you should keep this how-to guide handy to make sure everything is handled to your liking.