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Summer is fast approaching. Half of us are already thinking about the holidays, checking flights and dreaming about our next destination. Holidays are a well-deserved break for all your employees; however, it can become a nightmare for sole workers, small companies and medium enterprises. Learn how your company can be ready for the summer holidays and the benefits of our holiday cover service.

So, how can your office and your team get ready for summer?

Two key elements need to be considered: call answering and e-mail handling. We have over 17 years experience providing these services, so here are our suggestions for a “successful” annual leave:

Call Answering Holiday cover: Closed for holidays? Your phone line can stay open

Your employees are requesting their annual leave, what options do you have?

  • Closed for annual leave: Some CEOs opt for closing their business / office, and allowing employees to take their annual leave at the same time. This can translate into loss of business and decrease of customer satisfaction.
  • Work with a reduced team: Other companies hire summer replacement or just try to manage with their existing staff. It usually translates to higher stress level for their team as people need to be trained in news processes impacting in productivity level before and during the holiday.
  • Contact Centre Holiday cover: You can outsource all or part of your customer support to a call centre. This will allow your team to concentrate in the core business of your operation, or if you are a sole trader – you can have peace of mind as all calls will be answered, logged and waiting for you to follow up. While not all businesses can benefit from outsourcing to a call centre, in our experience it can be a quick and pain-free solution for a great variety of sectors. Call centre agents can support your employees’ annual leave, take messages, cover receptionist duties and ensure that you don’t miss that important call. All information is logged in our CRM and can be accessed through our website portal. Additionally, your on-call team can receive an e-mail with the information – so they can follow it up.

E-mail Handling: Auto Reply holiday annual leave email template

If you are going on holidays, you should set an auto reply to your e-mail account. In fact, this is the easiest and cheapest way to make your customers aware of your absence and your return date.

A quick search on the internet will provide you with a great selection of out of office / annual leave auto reply e-mail templates. See for example https://www.getmailbird.com/out-of-office-message-templates/ and https://blog.jobbio.com/2017/09/11/the-best-out-of-office-templates-for-your-next-holiday/

Independently of the format that you choose, your auto reply e-mail should include:

  1. Information about your absence: annual leave, the weekend away…
  2. Let them know when you will be back: “I’m out of the office from mm/dd to mm/dd”
  3. Provide an alternative contact point for any emergency: “If your request is urgent, please contact”
  4. If you are going to monitor your e-mails, let them know: “ I will have limited access to my e-mails”
  5. Signature: Don’t forget to include your name and logo! Include the same signature to your annual leave e-mail that any other regular e-mail.

If you want more information about how holiday cover works, get in touch or check 3 benefits to outsourcing customer service during holidays