Natural disasters can spell doom for your business if you fail to take the right precautionary measures in advance. You never know when a hail storm or a tornado is going to strike, so it is better to frame a strategy that allows you to back up all your communication data way before the time of impact. Even if you are glued to the television sets for weather updates, it is advisable to take care and avoid potential losses you might encounter. In order to neutralize the effect of such disasters, put in place a standard operating procedure for your IT team.
- Forwarding direct dial lines: Forwarding your primary business phone numbers is not recommended. However, your employees can use the find-me forwarding service for sending incoming calls to their mobile devices or home phones. This feature can be really useful if you are expecting a transportation interruption. You will need to learn about using the features and if possible train your employees to use the same during emergencies.
- Alter callers by using Holiday or Night Mode: Setting up the phone system to Holiday or Night mode can send an alert to callers on the changes in call coverage or business hours during bad weather. You will need to use the Time of Day settings after logging in to the service portal of your phone service provider. You will need to set the main lines to the Holiday or Night Mode and re-record the greeting messages and informing the callers about the change. This is pretty easy and any of your employees can do that without much fuss.
- Modify the greetings for auto-attendant: During disruptions in business operations, you can even modify the greetings for the auto-attendant. This is just to inform your callers about the emergency and letting them know that your operations will be up and running in a short time. For making changes to the greeting messages, you need to re-record the messages. On most systems, this is an easy procedure. Call the direct line of your office and when you hear the voicemail greeting, just press the star button (*). You will be required to enter the VM password and then press 5 followed by the number 7. Now your will be prompted to enter the system greeting password. Do this and press the # key and then enter the Audio Id Code. Now press the # key.
- Tell your employees to take their phones home: In case you are encountering an inclement weather, it is best to tell your employees to work from home. They can even receive and make calls from their homes if they have a computer with an Internet connection. Another device they may need is a headphone that has an integrated microphone. Softphones can be easily set up by the service providers and in case you like to do it yourself, visit the portal of your service provider and learn how to go about the set up.
Being prepared is the best way to mitigate emergencies and the same is applicable when you are experiencing an imminent weather threat. A robust strategy will definitely make it easier for you to negotiate and wriggle out of tight corners.
Author: Michelle Patterson has been working with telecom companies for over 10 years, and is excited with the new IP/VoIP/Cloud Telephony and other systems flooding the market. She is learning as much as she can about IP Telephony, Cloud Telephony, VoIP, Unified Communications, etc.