The death of a loved one is a difficult time for anyone, and with it comes a whirlwind of arrangements to make.  One of the most pressing of these are funeral arrangements, and a grieving family member’s first call to a funeral home is like an emotional time filled with many questions.  A funeral home must be able to deal with calls efficiently and compassionately in order to provide the best care to its customers during such a difficult time, but many funeral homes lack the resources to ensure that every call is answered quickly and professionally at any hour of the day.

Enter answering services, a solution that many associate with companies that need to provide emergent care and after hours services.  However, an answering service is an excellent approach to offering excellent customer service, even (and perhaps especially) during peak business hours.  For a funeral home that has limited office staff and resources, an answering service can help bridge the gap, ensuring that every call is handled quickly, professionally and compassionately.

A funeral home relies heavily on referrals, and many of the calls that come in are from people who are interested in finding out more about the funeral home’s services.  A trained answering service can serve as virtual receptionists, fielding inquiries and answering questions, allowing the home to focus on delivering the best care and service to their current customers.  Not only does this improve the home’s ability to meet the needs of their customers, it can increase efficiency and improve productivity.  Staff can focus on the tasks that need their experienced attention, while trained agents can answer questions and take messages where appropriate.

Some funeral homes are reluctant to opt for an answering service, worrying that it may make them seem impersonal, or that they won’t have sufficient control over the way calls are handled.  By choosing an experienced, proven answering service, funeral homes will have the option of reviewing all calls to ensure the service is communicating effectively with clients.  Additionally, the use of an answering service can eliminate the need for callers to navigate complex telephone prompt systems, making it easier for them to get to the right person when their mind is on other matters.

A good answering service provides customizable voice mail and messaging services that enable customers to make arrangements and request information at any time of the day, using scripting that the funeral home provides.  Funeral home owners and authorized personnel should look for services that allow them to retrieve their messages at anytime, from anywhere through an online interface.

For funeral homes that want to ensure they are able to handle every call to the customer’s satisfaction and meet the needs of customers facing a difficult time, an answering service is a natural choice.