Funeral homes directors and staff members have a great responsibility for helping family members navigate a most difficult time. Not only are they responsible for helping family members decide on the type and timing of service, they are expected to be the communication hub for all details relating to the deceased loved one’s services.
Whether they’ve chosen a traditional visitation and casket service followed by a burial or an end-of-life celebration, families want the funeral home staff to handle communicating with friends, colleagues, and acquaintances of the deceased who may call or email for information.
If a director or staff member has a habit of not returning calls in a timely manner or giving incorrect information, word spreads quickly and the funeral home’s reputation suffers. To avoid this scenario, leading funeral homes are turning to live answering services as communication partners for consistent, quality customer service.
Visitation and Service Details
Professionally trained, friendly answering service receptionists pick up the calls when the funeral home directors and staff are unable to answer by the 3rd ring, so a caller always reaches a live person who has the specific details about a person’s visitation and service details. Answering service receptionists also manage all calls that come in after typical business hours, 24/7, and on holidays.
Families commonly request that donations be made to a charitable organization, church, or school in lieu of sending flowers. However, obituaries typically don’t include details about where to send the donations, or how the organization prefers donations be made. Answering service receptionists can give callers details such as whether the organization prefers donations be mailed in or given online.
Where & When To Send Flowers
While it’s a common practice to send flowers to the funeral home for a service, many people wonder if a deceased’s family prefers that the flowers be displayed in a visitation area or where the funeral service will be conducted.
It’s also common for people to wonder if there are other alternatives the family prefers, such as sending the flowers directly to their home so they don’t have to transport them from the funeral home after the service. The receptionists at an answering service can convey those specific requests based on each family’s preferences.
What To Expect
Trends are changing when it comes to funerals. According to the National Funeral Directors Association, preference for cremation rather than burial continues to rise, as to demands for more personalized services. Overall, the ways in which family members say goodbye to a loved ones are becoming more varied and acceptable, including requesting that guests not wear black and come prepared for a celebratory party rather than a somber service.
Per families requests, answering services act as an extension of the funeral home staff in passing any specific information or requests along — whether it’s that people are invited to a cherished location for a placement ceremony of the remains or that the family asks everyone to share a happy memory in the funeral home’s online guestbook.
The last thing any funeral director wants is a family that’s left with regrets because their wishes weren’t honored or those who attempted to pay their respects weren’t able to easily do so because of poor communication.
If you’d like to learn more about how a compassionate, live answering service can serve your customers, contact Voice Link of Columbus, Inc. Customized communication solutions, secure HIPAA/HiTech messaging, and appointment scheduling can save you time and money while optimizing customer care. Our excellent reputation, expert staff, and state-of-the-art technology will exceed your expectations. Request information online or call us at (800) 262-2799 for a free consultation.
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