There are several different kinds of tasks that receptionist software may perform. It can help organize messages, keep track of employees, and manage incoming calls. There are also suites of software which enable a user to integrate several of these functions into one package, and programs which manage receptionist functions for specific industries.
One of the simplest kinds of receptionist software are programs that organize messages and track the availability of employees. These programs enable receptionists to make an electronic record of all incoming messages, including the time of delivery to the recipient. They may also have calendar features which provide current information on employee location in addition to enabling receptionists to make appointments for others. Some programs also integrate with other functions such as email in order to increase message delivery capability.
There are also types of receptionist software which are used to track and aid phone usage in companies where there is a high volume of call activity. These products typically consist of a screen which displays information about calls and the tools for making them. Information may include the current number, calls in the queue, and basic customer information. Tools can include anything that can help in making a call, such as a keypad, hold and hang up capability, and caller identification (ID).
Receptionist software which helps a user to make a call can also perform functions for other lines. It can check to see if a particular line is free and automatically transfer the call or send it into voicemail. This capability can encompass one or several locations, depending upon the size and complexity of the organization. Some products also enable multi-line functionality, such as the ability to set up and moderate conference calls.
Some kinds of receptionist software are designed to manage the challenges of a certain industry. For example, there are products for the medical industry which have functions for processing patient paperwork, sending appointment reminders, and managing self-serve options for patients. Features like these are meant to automate some of the most repetitive aspects of reception work in a particular area.
Whatever its function, most receptionist software will have a graphical user interface (GUI). This will often show all of the tools available on one screen. How it is arranged and how many features there are varies widely among different products. For example, some kinds of software show one call or extension at a time, while others show several extensions and their status on a single screen.