First Impressions:

A Sewer Backup on Christmas Eve? Cunningham Answers the Call


 By Sue Cunningham-Milito

Roger Vanderlaan of Vanderlaan Sewer in Grand Rapids, Michigan relies on Cunningham Communications for 24/7 telephone answering for emergencies such as this call:  imagine it is Christmas Eve, your family is visiting and your sewer line gets plugged.

A Cunningham Communications operator answers the frantic phone call and assures the family that Roger Vanderlaan is on the way.

In business for more than 30 years, Vanderlaan Sewer has been a client of Cunningham Communications almost “since day one.”

“My work is mostly an emergency because sewage is backing up into the house,” Vanderlaan says. “I need my calls to be answered 24 hours a day.”

“Nobody wants voice mail. People who call me are nervous. They are freaking out and they want to talk to a human. Cunningham Communications is a huge benefit to me and my customers.”

A typical scenario Vanderlaan says, goes like this: “Someone goes downstairs to do the laundry. The sewer is backing up into the basement. When the Cunningham operator says that I will call right back and be on the way it is really beneficial because it helps to calm down the caller.”

The text message he receives from Cunningham Communications has all the information Vanderlaan needs about the emergency to call back and schedule his service visit.

Vanderlaan Sewer is just Roger Vanderlaan and a helper. He does not employ a person in the office to answer his calls.  “I could not imagine doing my work without Cunningham Communications answering my phone 24/7.”

“I do this work for 8 or 9 plumbing companies in town, and I don’t want to have to take my gloves off and stop what I am doing every time the phone rings.”

Asked if he would recommend Cunningham Communications, Vanderlaan says: “absolutely, a lot of my customers tell me they liked talking to my wife on the phone. When I say it is my answering service, people say, ‘well they are really nice.’”

“The Cunningham operators need an ‘attaboy’ for what they do for me.”