• October 11, 2013
  • By Leonard Klie, Editor, CRM magazine and SmartCustomerService.com

Cablevision Launches Virtual Receptionist for Small Businesses

Cablevision Systems, a triple-play services provider in the New York metropolitan area, yesterday introduced Optimun Business' Virtual Receptionist, a cloud-based call routing and answering service for small business customers.

Optimum Business provides high-speed Internet and voice communications for small and midsized businesses up to 100 employees.

The Virtual Receptionist helps Optimum Voice business customers manage inbound calls while projecting a more professional image and keeping off-site or mobile workers better connected. The service can be managed through the small business Web portal.

"The Virtual Receptionist is an important business tool that gives our customers advanced phone capabilities to ensure they never miss a call, whether in the office or on the go," said Joseph DeLotto, vice president of business product management at Cablevision, in a statement. "The new service is customizable to meet the needs of individual small businesses, simple to manage, and requires no upfront equipment costs."

The Virtual Receptionist automatically answers incoming calls with a custom recorded message and presents the caller with a variety of call routing options that can be selected by telephone keystrokes, such as pressing a certain number for sales, directions, or to leave a voicemail. The recorded messages and keystroke options can be configured directly by the customer through the Web portal.

There is no limit on the number of calls that can be taken. Customers can specify the queue size they want up to 12 callers and the voicemail system support up to 180 minutes, according to a Cablevision spokesperson.

Additionally, the Virtual Receptionist enhances customer rollover hunting with a queue when other lines are in use to ensure businesses never miss important customer calls.

Benefits of the Optimum Virtual Receptionist for small business customers include the following:

  • Ability to direct customers quickly to the right person, department or information message;
  • Create a customized pre-recorded greeting for business hours, with the option to create an additional greeting for after hours;
  • Time of day scheduling to allow businesses to decide when they want a live person to answer customer calls and when to use the virtual receptionist;
  • Calls can be delivered to any phone number within the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada, or the U.S. Virgin Islands, or to any cell phone;
  • Selection of 12 on-hold music treatments and two intercept messages for the enhanced hunt group call queue; and
  • Management of the service directly from the Web portal with a set-up wizard to guide customers through each step of configuration and set-up.

Optimum Business Virtual Receptionist allows customers "to extend the boundaries of the business by integrating off-site or mobile workers into a comprehensive call answering solution," the spokesperson said. "Further, this feature provides a cost savings over premises-based call answering systems because there is no equipment to buy or manage and is easier to use than other network-based services because it works with a customer’s existing Optimum Voice business service phone number and can be managed through customers’ familiar business Web portal."

Virtual Receptionist is available to Optimum Voice business customers for $14.95 per month.

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