Thorsby installs new phone system

Published 8:03 pm Thursday, January 8, 2009

Thorsby has made a move that town officials hope will improve the service residents receive at town hall.

The town has recently installed a new phone system with an automated answering service.

Mayor Dearl Hilyer said he hopes this will create less confusion in the office.

“When someone used to call town hall, every phone in the office rang. No one knew whether the phone call was for you or for someone else,” Hilyer said. “Now, people can select who they want to talk to.”

The automated system gives callers a menu to select which department or person they need to speak with. Then, the phone rings just on that person’s phone and not throughout the building.

If the person doesn’t answer, then the call rolls over to a voicemail, which the person can check later and return the phone call. Previously, there was no way to leave a voice message for each person.

“Most of the time, we would just have to write down a message on a ‘while you were out’ sheet,” Hilyer said. “It would be difficult for our employees to answer the phone especially if there was only one or two people in the building at that time. Both might be tied up and couldn’t answer the phone before the person hung up.

“Now, the answering service always picks up the phone, and it gives residents a way to leave messages after business hours,” Hilyer added.

The phone system cost about $1,200, and a local dealer installed the phone system for the town.