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Call service company that just takes notes and forwards them to us. Nothing else!

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  • Call service company that just takes notes and forwards them to us. Nothing else!

    Hi everyone:

    I'm looking to replace our call service. This company we have is just awful. We're running very low on vacancies now and rarely rent (let alone, reserve) over the phone. I told them several times NOT to reserve or promise any units to callers. But it seems like it just bounces off. Here's what they did today -- our last unit. Plus told this lady the wrong deposit amount. Arghhh!







    So my question -- can someone recommend a call service company that just takes phone calls when we're not available, writes the message down and forwards it to us in an email? That is it. NOTHING else!

    What is also important is that such company DOES NOT have access to our customer database!

  • #2
    Why even bother with paying a company to do it if that's all you want? If you're low on vacancy just let it be what it is, if you can't answer the phone they can leave a voicemail. Or if you're out running a business errand have the phone calls forwarded to a cell phone if you're not wanting to miss them. If I have a customer in front of me I wont answer the phone, you can leave a voicemail if it's important or try again later.

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    • #3
      Orkocean it is nice to have a service that can forward an emergency call to the manager after-hours or on Sunday. So don't tell me that none of them can do that?

      Comment


      • #4
        Is the after hours/sunday issues a common occurrence? When I had a site where it was a pretty common problem due to faulty gates and what not we created a google voice # and put on our voicemail that if it was an emergency situation to contact that #. This way they had a way to reach out if need be and we didn't have to worry about giving our personal #'s out. As far as a service that does just messaging I personally don't know of any as anywhere i've dealt with wants to be all in and do reservations and all.

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        • #5
          Wouldn't forwarding the calls, coming in for an emergency or on Sunday, to that manager's phone accomplish the same thing? Or am I missing something?
          "Never let the inmates run the asylum!"

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          • #6
            OK. Here's what I mean.

            During the day, we can get away with an old fashioned answering machine. So no problem there.

            After-hours though it may be more than just forwarding messages. For one, I DON'T want to have ALL "unfiltered" messages to go to my cell phone. Otherwise people will start abusing it. Say, anything of this matter should be IGNORED after-hours:

            A. "Hey I want to pay my bill?
            B. "Why doesn't the gate open for me to come in?", or "I forgot my code to get in?"
            C. "I need to pay my late bill so that I can get in"
            D. Say, it's after site closing hours at night -- "hey, my code doesn't work!"

            All of that can wait until the next business day.

            The following though, should be forwarded to the manager right away:

            A. "Help. I am locked in on site" (because I am stupid and followed somebody in and now I'm stuck since I don't have a code.)
            B. "I coded in but then there was a strange guy that followed me in. Can you please check?"
            C. "I coded out to throw out my garbage and now I can't get back in because it's after-hours and the gate has locked me out but my car is inside."
            D. "Hey, there's a strange smell in the building N, can you please check?"

            Pretty much any of these would be a minor emergency that should be handled by a person from a call center. He/she could screen those calls and forward a message to the manager if it's appropriate (my second example.)

            Am I the only one who needs this kinda service? Orkocean

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            • #7
              Since no database is needed I would think there SHOULD be some company out there who could handle this since all it is would be answering phones and pretty much using common sense on what should be directed to you versus what should be told a message can be sent for them to follow up with you when the office opens. Nothing storage specific so more options to find a company.

              If it was me I'd still go the google voice number route. I did it for a few years and only a handful of non emergency calls ever came in and those were promptly told this is for emergencies only, contact again for a non emergency and they would have a $50 fee to their account. The best was a guy who felt it warranted calling the emergency line to ask if he could smoke inside his u-haul truck rental. Wasn't an actual storage customer, just a random truck rental so I happily put him in his place for disturbing me outside of office hours for something that isn't an emergency.

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              • #8
                yes, your example is exactly what I'm trying to avoid.

                (Or if they are willing to pay me additionally as much as they pay that silly answering service that we use now, I may consider tying a Google voice number to my personal cellphone.)

                Otherwise, that's why I'm posting this question here. If anyone knows such "basic services" phone answering company, please let me know?

                PS. We used to have something called PhoneSmart that worked exactly like that. But then someone bought it or they went under. IDK.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by bnr_manager View Post
                  Hi everyone:

                  I'm looking to replace our call service. This company we have is just awful. We're running very low on vacancies now and rarely rent (let alone, reserve) over the phone. I told them several times NOT to reserve or promise any units to callers. But it seems like it just bounces off. Here's what they did today -- our last unit. Plus told this lady the wrong deposit amount. Arghhh!







                  So my question -- can someone recommend a call service company that just takes phone calls when we're not available, writes the message down and forwards it to us in an email? That is it. NOTHING else!

                  What is also important is that such company DOES NOT have access to our customer database!
                  bnr We have had the same problem with Insomniac, we complain and all they say is sorry about it. They have dodos working there.
                  Dave (Woodee) Scott

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Dave Scott thank you for trying to understand me.

                    My other concern is that they have access to our customer database. The turnover in those call centers is literally months. People come, people go. I see new names on pretty much every single lead they send us. So I don't want one of those employees to "take" some of our customer private data with them when they get kicked out. Thus I'm wondering, if any of you were concerned about that security aspect?

                    pacnwstorage , Orkocean what service do you guys use?

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                    • #11
                      I had the same problem with my call center service constantly giving out wrong information. I decided to get an auto attendant that records and emails all voice mails to me. The auto attendant can help answer limited questions, if not they ring into the office or leave a message.

                      This has also removed all our telemarketing calls, because they don't hit a button to get through to us.

                      Some people have had an issue having to hit a button to reach our office, though I am not sure there is a solution that could help them.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I have the same call center and the same problems.

                        Over the summer when I had zero 5x5 vacancies and our website showed zero and their call center showed zero they still reserved units. When I called the prospective tenant they were livid & demanded a unit because they reserved one. There were no units available in the city. When I finally got to a supervisor she was able to make a note. If you want her name I will PM you. Also, on their website where you log in to input all of your information there is a place you can make notes that comes up. I just added DO NOT MAKE ANY RESERVATIONS - FORWARD NAME AND PHONE NUMBER TO MANAGER and that did help. Best of Luck.

                        Ok, in all fairness I should say that they field the calls and answer many questions - those first A-D calls. I have only had a couple of calls to my cell phone that needed to be but weren't emergencies. One was a stuck roll up door and one lady went to a different building and her key didn't work.
                        Last edited by Iamkathleenj; 19th August 2019, 12:57 PM. Reason: Fairness
                        The future depends on what you do in the present.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Iamkathleenj View Post
                          I have the same call center and the same problems.

                          Over the summer when I had zero 5x5 vacancies and our website showed zero and their call center showed zero they still reserved units. When I called the prospective tenant they were livid & demanded a unit because they reserved one. There were no units available in the city. When I finally got to a supervisor she was able to make a note. If you want her name I will PM you. Also, on their website where you log in to input all of your information there is a place you can make notes that comes up. I just added DO NOT MAKE ANY RESERVATIONS - FORWARD NAME AND PHONE NUMBER TO MANAGER and that did help. Best of Luck.
                          Thanks for posting. It's good to know that we're not alone in this.

                          And that's exactly what we did -- exactly like you describe it -- talked to the supervisor, made notes on their website in BOLD CAPS. --- It helped for a week or two but then it bounced right back. I don't know if you saw, was it a 60-minutes piece some time ago, about those call centers. Their employee turnover is literally months or even days. So you can imagine the level of training that goes into it. And guess who's paying for all that incompetence when a customer calls your facility? It's your company's reputation.

                          That is why I'm searching for a new service.

                          So RandyL I'm not sure what "Auto attendant" is. Maybe that's the way to go.

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                          • #14
                            Guys, I need to find a new call service. We called them after my first post and someone assured us that it will never happen...

                            This is what I just received:

                            Notes/Details
                            Hello prospect called in to reserve a unit. Made reservation for [8x10] with [Special]. They will be in at [Sometime this week/day] to complete their reservation, Thank you.
                            I was renting that 8x10 while the person called. We DO NOT reserve units over the phone, plus we DO NOT have any specials. So now it's on me to call this guy and give him the bad news. Arghhhh!!!!!


                            The bottom line, do you know of any company that does this other than Insomniac?

                            PS. Or at least, where is the setting that forbids them from accessing our database of vacant units. Do you know?
                            Last edited by bnr_manager; 31st August 2019, 02:27 PM.

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                            • #15
                              I still don't understand why you would have a call service at all. The prospective tenant can leave a message or you can forward your calls. Get rid of the call service that obviously is causing you headaches and constantly breaks promises made to you.
                              "Never let the inmates run the asylum!"

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