One of the trickiest things about starting a new company is developing an appropriate business model. While a new business owner may consider adopting a model that's worked for another company, there is no real one-size-fits-all plan that will definitively lead to success.
As such, business officials need to be very cautious that the corporate practices they adopt will not have an adverse effect on their sales. For example, it may be compelling for business owners to hire a larger in-house customer service staff.
Naturally, the owner wants his or her company to provide an appearance of always putting the customer first, and having full-time staff members whose primary duty during business hours is fielding customer concerns could be considered an effective manner to do so.
However, according to a recent Inc.com article, over-staffing is a surefire way to mismanage your business. Especially during the early stages of a business, customer volume may not be high enough to warrant a large customer service staff, leaving an owner to pay multiple full-time salaries and employee benefits for non-necessary personnel.
As such, it would be wise for up-and-coming entrepreneurs to follow the advice of Dave Kerpen – CEO of social media and word of mouth marketing firm, Likeable Media – who suggests that businesses grow organically when it makes sense. In other words, "nail it, then scale it."
One extremely effective and cost-efficient way to accomplish this goal is by outsourcing customer service to a certified third-party answering service. By taking this measure, an owner will only pay for minutes that customer service reps actually spend interacting with customers and relaying messages to the appropriate party, maximizing value for services rendered.
Additionally, with a large staff available to answer customer inquiries on a 24/7 basis, an answering service can effectively handle an increased volume of customer calls, meaning business owners can seamlessly scale upwards without hiring more staff should business pick up.