chatIcon
Live Chat
Are you working remotely and need options to stay connected? We are here to help. [ Learn More ]
Home » Posts tagged 'communication'

5 Essential Tools to Boost Business Communications

Looking to improve your business phone system and improve customer relations? Here we will look at 5 essential tools that can improve business communications: IVR system, call recording software, outbound calling service, virtual numbers, and multichannel communication options.

Essential Communication Tools

Boosting your business communication system is important as it can determine how your sales perform. A business’ communication system is often two-ways: internal and external or inbound and outbound. Internal communication refers to conversations between team members or departments within the business. External, on the other hand, refers to interaction between the business and its customers. Additionally, inbound communication refers to incoming calls while outbound refers to outgoing calls.

Good internal communication helps encourage collaboration while increasing productivity and efficiency by ensuring everyone is on the same page. Whereas strong external communication leads to improved customer service and success and increased sales generation.

Global Call Forwarding offers a range of business phone solutions and communication tools to help you achieve your business goals through clear and effective communication. Read on the learn more!

1. IVR System

An interactive voice response or IVR system is an automated voice response that uses prerecorded messages and predetermined menu options to interact with customers. It answers incoming calls, greets callers, and provides them with options to move forward. It also helps identify the purpose of the call and directs callers to the appropriate department or agent.

Having your IVR system filter out incoming calls can help you better manage your call volume. This way, simple tasks can be taken care of by the IVR while more complex tasks move to the agent or employee.

Global Call Forwarding’s Advanced IVR feature is entirely customizable. You can decide what actions and options you want to give callers and design your IVR system in a way that suits your needs best. We offer IVR with each of our virtual number plans.

2. Call Recording Software

Call recording software is another popular and highly effective business communication tool. Businesses record calls to:

  • Improve quality of customer service
  • Train new employees on what standards to uphold
  • Maintain compliance with regulations
  • Protect against liabilities
  • Document conversations and transactions, etc.

And so, recording business calls can prove extremely beneficial for companies of all sizes and in every industry. In fact, in some industries and for particular business types (such as financial services), recording business calls is an absolute necessity.

With Global Call Forwarding’s call recording software, you can record 100% of all incoming and outgoing calls. These recordings are saved as MP3 files in your online account management system for up to 6 years. You can adjust the percent of calls to be recorded, as per your needs.

3. Outbound Calling

An outbound calling service is meant to support a company’s outgoing call volume. It does so by providing an opportunity for companies to expand their reach through phone conversations. With an outbound calling service, your enterprise can contact local and international customers and prospects. All without the hassle of international or long-distance calling charges.

With outbound calling, your business can:

  • Welcome new customers
  • Increase brand awareness
  • Generate sales and leads
  • Verify accounts and purchases
  • Follow-up with recent purchases or subscriptions
  • Offer specials and memberships discounts
  • Offer customer support and customer success
  • Send out appointment/renewal reminders, and more.

Furthermore, Global Call Forwarding’s outbound calling service comes with a customizable caller ID feature. You can display specific caller IDs when calling their matching cities, states, or countries. This will increase the likelihood of calls being answered as customers recognize local and toll free numbers over international or unknown numbers.

4. Virtual Phone Numbers

Virtual numbers are growing increasingly popular among businesses because of their affordability, flexibility, and mobility. These numbers route calls over an internet connection, making it possible to make and answer calls from anywhere in the world. Additionally, you can transform just about any device into a business phone to maintain communications.

Getting and using a virtual number is significantly cheaper than a regular one. This is because it lets you connect with customers across the world for inexpensive rates, which is not possible with traditional phone lines. And these numbers can be used from anywhere. So, whether you are traveling for business or need to move your office, taking your number with you is very easy.

The most attractive aspect of virtual numbers, however, is the list of additional advanced features that come along. These include:

  • Call forwarding
  • Call recording
  • IVR/PBX
  • Call transfer
  • Time/country routing
  • Simultaneous ringing
  • Outbound calling
  • SMS capabilities

5. Multichannel Communication Options

Besides phone communication, you may also consider providing your customers with other communication channels to increase convenience. For example, you can get an SMS plan along with your virtual number to encourage customers to text your business. This is helpful for customers who prefer texting over calling a company. Additionally, you can even maintain active web chat, email, and social media accounts so that customers preferring those methods of contact receive responses and resolutions.

Additionally, you can also have a click-to-call feature on your website that makes it easy for interested prospects to connect with you. For example, Global Call Forwarding offers a CallMe Click website widget. This widget, placed on your website, allows visitors to fill in their contact information and receive a call from your company immediately. Doing so tremendously reduces the number of steps they need to take to call you and it reduces wait times as well.

Communicate Better and Improve Overall Sales

These essential tools can boost business communications by making processes more efficient and increasing productivity within the office space. Additionally, they work towards providing callers with an enhanced caller experience that encourages trust in your company. To learn more about these tools or other features that we offer, call us at 1 (888) 908 6171 or talk to an expert.

Coronavirus: How to Keep Communicating During Isolation

Coronavirus (COVID-19) has slowed our lives down and has practically brought the entire world to lockdown. In these uncertain times, it is easier than ever to lose contact with important people and connections. So, how do you maintain relations and keep communicating during isolation?

Coronavirus: Communicating During Quarantine

Coronavirus has taken the world by surprise, causing many of us to practice social distancing and work from home, if possible. In such times, communication becomes more important than ever. Whether it is checking in on family and friends or completing business tasks, the right tools can help you stay in contact and take care of business.

Keeping Business Communications going

Most non-essential companies have been ordered to shut down in different cities, states, and countries. However, there are still many companies that can conduct operations virtually or remotely. This involves putting faith in employees while also ensuring daily and weekly tasks or projects are completed. If your business is working remotely, here are some tools you and your team can use to make communication easier:

  • Office chat tools such as Slack, Google Chat, WhatsApp groups, etc.
  • Video conferencing tools such as Skype, Google Meet, Zoom, etc.
  • Virtual numbers with call forwarding to forward incoming business calls to personal or home phone lines.
  • Toll free numbers to make it free for customers and clients to reach you.

Most chat and video conferencing tools are available for free. They work over your internet or WiFi connection and offer good quality calls. This will help you be in quick and constant contact with your remote employees. You can create group chats for different departments as well as collaborate by sharing important files and documents.

You can also get virtual numbers such as toll free numbers from Global Call Forwarding, or port your existing number. Virtual numbers work over the internet and through an online account management system. You can set up incoming customer calls to be forwarded to specific employee numbers. For example, you can have calls made to your customer service line directed to your customer service team working remotely. Or, have them sent to your receptionist who then directs them to the right department.

Presently, to keep things even more convenient and cost-effective, you can get $5 off Global Call Forwarding’s Value, Power, Premium, and Enterprise plans with the COVID19 promo code. This will help you maintain essential communications between your business and its valued customers with call forwarding, even during a pandemic like coronavirus. Purchasing and setting up a virtual number is quick and easy.

Personal Communications

Social distancing is much harder for some people over others. But it does not mean that you need to stop all kinds of interaction. With technological advances, it is possible to stay connected even in uncertain times through communication apps such as:

  • Instant messaging over the internet using iMessage, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, etc.
  • Social media: Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, etc.
  • Video chats: Google Hangouts, Skype, Google Duo, WhatsApp, etc.

These apps and tools make it easy to keep in touch with friends and family through texts and video capabilities. You can create and share audio, images, videos, GIFs, etc. In fact, Netflix has an interesting and fun “Netflix Party” feature that even lets you watch shows and movies with your loved ones along with a group chat element. While virtual, this still maintains some degree of social interaction that can be comforting during this time.

Stay Positive and Keep Talking

Everything does not need to come to a halt during the coronavirus pandemic. Thanks to the internet and virtual communication capabilities, you can still stay in touch with the people you care about. Whether it’s grandparents stuck indoors or employees working from home or keeping a sick friend company, stay positive and keep communicating.

Extremely Useful Communication Solutions for Healthcare Services

Maintaining strong internal and external communication is important for businesses of every kind. Whether to schedule appointments, answer queries, or collaborate between different departments, having a strong communication system is essential to the successful running of healthcare services. Global Call Forwarding offers resourceful communication solutions that can help increase sales and enhance customer relations.

Communication Solutions: Why Healthcare Services Must Pay Attention to Their Communication System

Callers—patients, users, doctors, nurse practitioners, and more—often connect with a healthcare service for a variety of reasons. Healthcare services such as clinics, hospitals, therapy and rehabilitation, online and virtual patient care, medical insurance businesses, and pharmaceutical companies need a well-built communication system to:

  • Handle and store patient information
  • Schedule appointments
  • Maintain communication between doctors, patients, and pharmacies
  • Provide caller switch drug information to users and medical professionals
  • Screen for clinical trial
  • Fill and refill prescriptions
  • Register complaints and concerns
  • Provide recall hotlines
  • File insurance claims
  • Collect feedback, and more.

Let’s have a look at four core communication solutions—toll free numbers, call recording software, outbound calling, and IVR—that can reinvent how your healthcare service communicates.

1) Toll Free Business Numbers

Toll free business numbers are one of the most popular communication solutions available. They help further solidify a reliable means of communication and support incoming call volumes. Calls made to such numbers are free for the caller as they charge the receiver instead. This makes it easy and free for callers to quickly get in touch with your business and not have to worry about paying high long-distance fees.

Furthermore, you can use extensions to demonstrate professionalism. Callers can then instantly connect with the right department or professional for their needs. You can have extensions for different activities such as scheduling appointments, drug information, complaints and suggestions, prescriptions renewal requests, etc.

2) Call Recording Software

A call recording software, offered by virtual phone service providers, enables you to record and review calls. You can choose to record all incoming and outgoing calls or only certain types of calls. In fact, businesses offering phone therapy prefer recording calls for documentation purposes.

Call recording for healthcare services ensures your service is HIPPA and MIPPA compliant while also keeping records of important transactions and payments. Additionally, it lets you collect customer data quickly and with fewer errors, as opposed to manual note-taking. This data can then be used to review patient files, clinical trial screening, and collection of feedback. Another reason why a call recording software is beneficial to healthcare service is that it helps reduce liabilities based on false claims and misunderstandings by acting as evidence.

An additional benefit is that you can review recorded calls for quality assurance purposes and to study consumer behavior and preferences. This can give you insights into better ways to serve your customers.

3) Outbound Calling

An outbound calling service is generally used by sales and customer support teams. This service encourages and supports outbound sales and enhances customer support efforts. Your healthcare service can use outbound calling to connect with customers regarding recent visits, renewal and payment reminders, recalls, or to inform them of company updates and promotions.

What outbound calling does best is it gives you a means to building strong relationships with callers by letting you follow up with them and increase satisfaction. Such interaction can go a long way in increasing confidence and trust in your business.

Global Call Forwarding also offers outbound call recording software that lets you review and study outgoing calls to identify areas of strength and weakness.

4) Interactive Voice Response (IVR)

An interactive voice response (IVR) is an automated response that answers incoming calls and presents callers with a set of menus. A common example of IVR is a prerecorded voice asking callers to “Press 1 for [insert language preference], 2 for [insert language preference].” The next level can target more specific categories or departments. For example, “to make an appointment, Press 1. For billing and payments, Press 2. To renew your prescription, Press 3,” and so on.

Having an IVR system integrated within your communication system can help your employees handle incoming call volumes by distributing them. Callers are able to complete simple tasks by interacting with the automated voice and prerecorded messages. And if their case or concern is too complex, they can be transferred to an employee or agent. Having your system set up this way only strengthens the image of your service as an established one that takes customer care seriously. Learn more about how to create a perfect IVR system for your business.

Consider Investing in These Communication Solutions

The best way to know what works for you and your business is to research and give the service or product a chance to work. You can get these communication solutions from the world’s most trusted provider, Global Call Forwarding for a reasonable price. Sign up or call us at 1 (888) 908 6171 to learn more.

Communication, Credibility, and Trust When it Comes to Your Staff

Business leaders who win are those who communicate openly and regularly, have a clear and committed communications policy, initiate various programs to support communication and collaboration, and assess their own performance. Communication, credibility, and trust are all important to building a reliable team.

Leaders often talk about building trust. Trust is something that must be earned. It is not something that today’s business leaders can take for granted, because both internal staff and external customers and clients are increasingly less trusting. Establishing open communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff is critical to the ultimate success of a business.

Trust is at the Foundation of Successful Businesses

With allegations of large corporations taking part in fraud out of greed, trust has been eroded in every direction and new rules have been set with regard to how businesses are expected to operate. This applies to communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff as the internal workings of a business is where it all starts and where everything builds from.

Employees, investors, customers, government entities, and regulators are increasingly demanding greater corporate accountability and transparency. These types of measures are aimed at curbing excesses of businesses and protecting the public.

Despite these new developments and higher standards, business leaders of well-respected, high-performing businesses have long acknowledged the value of building and sustaining trust. Again, establishing solid communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff is at the heart of all of it.

Great Communication Fosters Trust

Building trust in a business’ leadership requires a personal effort on the part of the business leaders themselves. It is a team effort as well, but it starts at the very top. The corporate function that is most likely to support business leaders’ efforts to build and sustain trust in the long-term is communication.

Communication contributes to the creation of a business environment of trust around the leaders themselves and enables them to lead more effectively, engage their employees, and ultimately deliver the best possible results. Communication serves as the primary positioning agent for overall message delivery and leadership development for managers. The most successful business leaders have learned this fact from the first-hand experience.

Communication Credibility and Trust
Source: Stockphoto.com O#23559 ID#100046269887

Excellent Communication Leads the Way to Credibility

Communication cannot alone make a person trust someone who is not trustworthy, but it can help to create a culture in which trust can thrive. Building communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff is absolutely essential.

Breaking it down to the basics, leaders are people who are followed and people will not follow a leader they do not trust. Trust makes it easier to get into alignment and stay there. Trust is an extremely powerful force that builds loyalty, increases overall credibility, and supports effective communication within an organization. Trust gives you the right to benefit of the doubt in a situation where you would like to be heard, understood, and believed.

As any business leader or employee knows, trust can be severely tested when there are periods of high uncertainty and change during mergers, acquisitions, and other periods of transition. Despite a business leader’s best intentions, during these times it is often nearly impossible to communicate as much information as one would like. If one has a well-established system of communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff, this reservoir of trust that has been built will carry you through these times.

At the very epicenter of building trust, is communication. Today, with public confidence in many organizations failing, solid leadership, communication, trust, business performance, and reputation are all inextricably linked. A workforce that trusts its leaders and really understands what is happening within the organization will be more satisfied, more productive, and also better able to communicate and contribute ideas for improvements.

Leaders of successful organizations know that in order to create a culture of trust, one must share information quickly and freely, and build relationships with employees and other stakeholders, allowing for their businesses to thrive.

It is not just about providing information. Building trust also involves managing communications and consistently encouraging discussion around what needs to be done. Always providing opportunities for feedback is a great example of how this is done.

Communicating sincerely, honestly, and regularly may be challenging for some business leaders and managers, but the return on good communication is high. For leaders of large corporations, human resources and communications channels within an organization, a regular self-assessment of whether or not you are acting as a communications champion within your business model helps to cast light on what you are doing well and also helps to focus on areas that may need some improvement.

Measuring progress, getting feedback, and giving feedback are all supportive of the goal to strengthen communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff and every effort will be well worth it.