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Summer’s here but don’t drop the ball while you play - by Nicola Jackson, Property Team Manager at telephone answering specialist, Moneypenny

29 July 2015 1266 Views
Summer’s here but don’t drop the ball while you play - by Nicola Jackson, Property Team Manager at telephone answering specialist, Moneypenny

THE UK housing market is reported to be picking up according to figures this month from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML). Certainly our property receptionists are busy answering overflow calls for agents up and down the country and we are hearing that in spite of the supply shortage, those properties on the market are selling well. Competition is steep though and the pressure is on for agents to consistently deliver their `A’ game, never missing a new business opportunity.

With this in mind, this time of year; holiday season, presents a challenging conundrum. Agents know they can’t afford to take their foot off the gas, but also recognise that staff need to take time out. These are a funny old few weeks. Schools have broken up for the long summer break, working parents are juggling childcare with doing the day job and thoughts are turning to a week or two of switch-off sunshine, sea and sangria.

It’s an annual headache, encouraging those well-earned breaks, while making sure your service remains seamless for customers, who demand the best from you and are quick to judge if things go a little awry.

Managing the peaks and troughs of commercial activity in a cost-effective and practical way is a challenge for any business whatever the time of year, as they look to keep overheads low, while delivering the best possible customer experience. Add in the vagaries of staff availability during holiday season and it can be easy to drop the proverbial business ball.

Here at Moneypenny we regularly analyse our call data and typically find that businesses of all kinds, agents included, rely on our receptionists in a slightly different way to keep them on track in answering all calls successfully during holiday periods. We often notice seasonal fluctuations in call volumes and patterns which reflect in-house activity and staff absences. Throughout the year, Bank Holidays place an additional strain on agents, with call spikes notorious around these times. We can virtually guarantee that the busiest day for us in any given quarter will be the day after a Bank Holiday. Sure enough April 7th (immediately after the Easter break) was the busiest of Q2 this year, with the two other `Bank Holiday Tuesdays’ in the top 10. When compared to a normal Tuesday, the day after a Monday Bank Holiday averages a 32.50% call volume rise for our property receptionists. This means that without telephone answering support, agents would have either lost those calls or callers would have been faced with the dreaded cold service of an answering machine.

Restful holidays have been proven to be good for health; clinically shown to cut blood pressure, help us sleep better and bounce back from stress. The benefits are there for the taking. The trick is to keep your business in good health at the same time. Answering your phone consistently all year round helps you to keep all bases covered while you kick back………and relax, anytime you want to.

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