Local Businesses Earn National Awards, Second Consecutive Year

Local Businesses Earn National Awards, Second Consecutive Year

Finger Lakes Answering Service, Communications Group Recognized for Excellence


AUBURN—Two area call centers: Finger Lakes Answering Service of Auburn and its sister company, Communications Group, of Syracuse, were honored with the industry exclusive Award of Excellence for a second, consecutive year.

The awards are presented annually by the Association of TeleServices International, the industry’s trade association for providers of telecommunications and call center services including telephone answering and message delivery.

During six months of intensive testing, an independent panel of judges scored call-handling skills such as courtesy, response time, accuracy and overall service to clients, the cornerstones of the call management industry.

Only companies with high scores in all categories are presented with the industry-coveted Award of Excellence. Finger Lakes Answering Service and Communications Group are two of only four winners in New York State; the other two are located in Long Island.

“We’re especially proud to have been honored for a second year in a row,” Gardner McLean, president of the two companies said. “Our success is largely dependent upon our employees and the excellent customer service they provide.”

Communications Group was founded in 1965 as a local answering service, and was acquired by Finger Lakes Business Services, Inc. in 2003. The sister company, Finger Lakes Answering Service was founded in 1990 as an answering service, and was purchased by Finger Lakes Business Services in 2002.

McLean, who is a Skaneateles resident, is the president of both companies while Cicero resident Ray Schremp serves as vice president. Finger Lakes Business Services employs 38 people at the Auburn and Syracuse locations.

Both firms handle calls and messaging for a variety of businesses throughout the United States, including apartment complexes, funeral homes, health care professionals, crisis lines, small offices including virtual receptionist services, and various contractor trades including plumbers, electricians, and contractors.

“Our clients frequently compliment us on high performance,” Schremp said. “This industry award is yet further acknowledgment that we’re doing an outstanding job.”

The company is continuously gaining market share, obtaining new customers through current customer referrals as well as through business acquisitions, most recently acquiring the Oswego-based Executive Support Services. With more than 1,000 clients across the country, Finger Lakes Business Services is in the top third of the approximate 4,000 answering services in the country in terms of size.

ATSI, which was founded in 1942 as a national trade association representing live answering services, now encompasses companies around the world offering specialized and enhanced operator-based services including: call centers, contact centers, inbound telemarketing (order entry), paging, voice messaging, emergency dispatching, faxing, and internet services among others.

Finger Lakes Answering Service and the Communications Group were presented with the award at ATSI’s 2006 Annual Convention held in Portland, Maine.