How Much Do Virtual Receptionists Cost?
At this point, you may already have an idea of what virtual receptionists can bring to the table. Just as perplexing, however, is the question “How much is a virtual receptionist?” Since they work in a more complex setup than what in-house receptionists use, it can be easy to think that having virtual receptionists can cost a premium.
While virtual receptionists carry a unique set of expenses, these costs are worth it in the long run. To help guide your decision-making, here are some items to consider:
Wages and benefits
Glassdoor reports that the average hourly wage of virtual receptionists is $23.82, or about $49,500 annually. This is close to the average hourly wage of in-house receptionists, which is $25.55, or about $49,000 annually. The wage similarities are to be expected, as virtual receptionists are functionally equivalent to in-house receptionists in nearly every regard.
Both in-house receptionists and virtual receptionists enjoy 401(k) and receive other benefits like insurance and paid time off, depending on the company and the work agreement. The main difference is that in-house receptionists also receive benefits like free parking and commuter assistance, which virtual receptionists cannot use. However, these are negligible to virtual receptionists compared to the benefit of working remotely.
Other potential expenses
Wages and benefits take up only the predictable fraction of your expenses with in-house receptionists. A considerable part of your costs also includes variable expenses that depend on situations like sudden absences or receptionist turnover.
Here are some situations involving in-house receptionists that can lead to additional costs to your business:
- Leaves and absences – Untimely PTOs or sudden absences can lead to an unattended front desk with lower ROI.
- Hiring and training – When experiencing receptionist turnover, it can be time-consuming and resource-intensive to search for, hire, and train new receptionists.
- Customer turnover – Mistakes or poor performance in delivering customer service by the front desk can lead to loss of customers.
Since virtual receptionists work remotely, they avoid having to travel to and from the location daily. As a result, they’re far less likely to suffer from burnout and file for leaves, become absent, or perform poorly, leading to far fewer potential expenses for you.
Enabling this requires you to allocate part of your budget to a virtual receptionist platform like WelcomeWare. The platform offers both software and hardware, which includes the number of kiosks, visitor management system, and reporting dashboard. This scales with the number of locations you manage; however, it’s a small price to pay to significantly lower your variable costs.
Return on investment
Value is a defining factor in whether or not you should get virtual receptionists. Since employing virtual receptionists involves a unique set of expenses from in-house receptionists, you have to determine whether paying these expenses is worth it.
To do that, you have to look at the return on investment of virtual receptionists through what they can do for your business:
- Covering multiple areas simultaneously. A single virtual receptionist can seamlessly attend to multiple front desks at the same time.
- Easier contingent front desk coverage. With a strong virtual front desk team, you can easily cover a receptionist who is busy or unavailable with another receptionist who is standing by without the need to travel.
- Scaling your receptionist team. Hiring new virtual receptionists is unnecessary when you can leverage your current in-house receptionists to enable your virtual front desk.
- Retaining the same receptionists. Because virtual receptionists work remotely, they no longer have to spend a lot of time and energy traveling every day. This may lead to less fatigue and burnout, and thus fewer leaves and absences and lower chances of receptionist turnover.
- Improving customer relationships. Since virtual receptionists are more energetic, they also tend to be more positive, allowing them to be much better at setting a more welcoming tone and environment for your customers.
Virtual receptionists are worth every penny
The costs of adopting a virtual front desk solution may be daunting at first, especially with virtual receptionists being a novel concept. However, transitioning to a virtual front desk may yield a greater ROI for your business that can have a lasting positive impact on your customer relationships and business productivity as a whole.
For the best results, you have to use a virtual receptionist platform that suits your business needs. WelcomeWare is an all-in-one software and hardware solution that fully enables your current receptionist team to operate a virtual front desk that you can scale across multiple locations. With WelcomeWare, you can enjoy everything that virtual receptionists have to offer and more.
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