Moneypenny – the UK’s leading telephone answering and outsourced switchboard specialist – looked at call volume figures for the past two years, analysing trends immediately before and after Christmas.
Its findings revealed that on both occasions the highest increase took place on the first working day in January. In 2015, Monday January 5 saw a 26% rise in legal calls when compared to the average Monday in December, 2014; while on Monday, January 6 2014 there was a 16% uplift in a similar comparison.
The number of calls remained steady in the run up to Christmas with an increase in the second week of December, while call volumes predictably decreased in the days between Christmas and New Year.
Bernadette Bennett, Moneypenny’s legal commercial manager, explains: “It’s a time of peaks and troughs when it comes to handling telephone calls over Christmas, so it’s a challenge for firms in terms of getting their resourcing just right.
“Many are operating with a skeleton staff over the holidays, but they still need to ensure they never miss a call and are maximising business opportunities, while delivering a consistently high-quality response to clients. Post-holiday we find firms requiring additional support to cope with the upsurge in call numbers, with the first working day of the New Year usually one of our busiest.”
Moneypenny has also reported a rise in enquiries from law firms seeking overflow or fully outsourced support as they make preparations for the holiday.
Bernadette continued: “During November and December we typically see firms contacting us as they take stock of their business continuity preparedness and their ability to maintain business flow when accounting for staff absences.
“This is a variable time of year with the possibility of adverse weather and staff taking time off over Christmas and the New Year. Working with a telephone answering partner takes the pressure off and ensures firms have additional receptionist cover every time they need it.”
Calls to law firms and legal practitioners account for the largest share of Moneypenny’s overall call volume, with around two million calls a year answered either on an overflow or fully outsourced basis.