Answering Service or Call Center: What’s the Difference?

Row of answering service workers

It’s a question that we always hear, and the answer is surprisingly nuanced. Let’s break it down. The difference between an answering service and a call center lies in how the services are supported. An answering service may be supported by one person or several, while a call center employs one or more people. The first has a single customer support agent to carry out on behalf of that customer, while the second has multiple agents handling several customers simultaneously. It is the primary difference between an answering service and a call center. While they are certainly related, they are not the same. Find out how call answering services in North Carolina differ.

1. Cost

The cost of a call center is typically significantly higher than that of a small business answering service in Carolina. When you factor in rent, utilities and staffing needs, there is usually a higher overall cost for running a call center. For these reasons, call centers are better suited for companies with a corporate culture that accepts higher rates than an answering service.

2. Functionality

Call centers and answering services function as a customer support system but in vastly different ways. Answer Carolina has multiple agents handling several customers at once to help with customer support requests and inquiries. Call answering services in Carolina are supported by one agent and take all calls for the customer, so it is designed to be as efficient as possible for that single person to handle on behalf of the customer.

3. Training

Call answering services can be supported by an employee with little to no prior customer service experience. In contrast, call centers should be staffed by a customer support agent with a good understanding of that company’s products and services. The level of quality in customer support and service will be significantly higher when you have better-trained employees, which is why training is a crucial difference between answering service and call center.

4. Personal Touch

Answering services and call centers provide customer support, but an answering service is a personal touch that doesn’t exist within the framework of a call center. Call answering services in Carolina represent the level of personalized one-on-one attention expected from a business, which can be a huge factor in gaining loyal customers. A personal touch is essential, especially when customers have an emergency or need to complain about poor service.

5. Scalability

Small business answering services in Carolina typically have a set appointment schedule and rely on the same agents to work daily. It creates a more significant challenge when scaling up or down and doesn’t allow much room for flexibility. A call center is more scalable because it allows for added volume more efficiently and has greater room for flexibility.

6. Reliability

Call centers are far more reliable than those who answer your calls from an answering service because a call center’s client base is far larger. Also, the overall volume of work that a single employee can handle increases exponentially, with minimal added stress on their resources.

These two call answering services in North Carolina are both types of customer support. Still, the differences are essential to consider when you’re on the fence about using one or the other. If you are looking for a more scalable option that provides a higher level of service, contact Answer Carolina today and we’ll walk you through the process of getting a call center up and running for your business.

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