Frequently Asked Questions
The Answers You Need
Is this job a legitimate work from home job?
We assure you that this is a 100% legitimate work from home opportunity. We are proud to partner with Arise Virtual Solutions to use their platform to service our clients. Since 1997, thousands of Independent Businesses and their agents have enjoyed the services they provide for Arise and our business is one of them!
What do I need to set up a home office?
Make your home office somewhere where you look forward to going to work! You can convert a spare room into an office space or setup up a space in your home where you feel the most comfortable. The choice is up to you. Create a work space that makes you feel comfortable and gets you excited to work and puts everything you need at your fingertips. You will need a QUIET PLACE TO WORK online from home. This is critical to prevent background noise on calls. It is important to choose a distraction-free area where callers can’t hear any sounds from children, barking dogs, traffic noises, door bells, phones, TVs, radios, etc. For the most up to date system requirement please to view the current system and equipment policy information.
Will I be an employee of Pratt’s Answering Service?
No, you will be partnered with Pratt's Answering Service as an independent contractor. You will be responsible for your schedule, equipment, insurance, client specific certification and applicable State and Federal taxes. You will receive a form 1099 in order to file taxes. Note – no tax money is withheld from independent contractors pay. It is recommended to personally save some money in anticipation of tax season.
Just like you are not an employee or Pratt’s Answering Service, we are not your boss. Think of us more as a guide, paper pusher, payroll processor, coach, and cheerleader! Pratt’s Answering Service does reserve the right to release independent contractors that are not fulfilling their obligations and are critically under-performing after all efforts for redemption are exhausted. Once accepted as a Customer Service Professional, you will be representing our company and team. We expect you to conduct yourself with professionalism, courtesy, to do your best for the Clients you are servicing, and to seek help when needed.
Who can apply?
We are looking for people who are positive and who have the desire, discipline and motivation to work from home. The most successful virtual agents are self-motivated, able to work with minimal supervision, have at least basic computer skills, excellent verbal and written communication skills, high attention to detail, the ability to multi-task and excellent customer service skills . You must be an US citizen, 18 years of age, no criminal record and be able to pass a background and drug test. We are not currently open to new or returning business partners that reside within California, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, or Wisconsin.
What type of clients will I be working for?
You will be required to electronically sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement prior to viewing a list of clients. Once you have completed the registration process, signed this agreement and your partnership with Pratt's Answering Service has been finalized you will have access to all current client opportunities on the Portal. The types of companies our agents provide virtual services to include Wireless Services, Tax Preparation, Utility Companies, Major Retail Chains, Roadside Assistance, Resort Hotels & Travel, Cruise Ships & Travel, Website & Chat Support, Recreation & Theme Parks, Online Retail & Office Products.
What type of services can Client Support Professionals provide for the clients?
Call types may include any or a combination of the following: sales, customer service, technical support and lead generation. Once you become a Client Support Professional, you can check the “Opportunity Page” on the portal to learn about the client programs and call types available.
Can I have another job while I provide services for clients?
Yes!! You have the freedom to work for other companies while you provide services to a client. However, we do expect our Client Support Professionals to honor their minimum hourly commitments and their scheduled commitments to our clients and meet all performance standards to continue with a Statement of Work.
What equipment is needed for me to be able to do this job?
Most American homes already have the equipment required to begin. A coumputer that can be directly wired to a modem and a USB headset with microphone are a must for these positions, Some of our clients may require you to have a landline to accept calls while others you will be taking your call VoIP through your computer. If you are required to have a land line you will also need to have a call-center style phone and headset that can cost less than $30.
Are there any cost in order for me to partner with Pratt's Answering Service?
You will be required to take a back ground check. Because of recent fraudulent activity the cost of this check is now the responsibility of any newly registered CSP. The cost of this check is $30.00 and is done by a third party entity so no revenue is earned by Pratt's Answering Service. This background check is good for 36 months, If you are not able to pass this background check you would not move forward in the registration process so no other cost would be incurred by you.
Once you have passed the initial background check and you have picked the client that you would like to work with you will be required to take a client specific training course in order to be certified so you are able to provide quality customer service for the client you choose. There is no cost to taking a training course, however there is limited positions available in each class so if you are a no show on the first day or if you were to drop the course in the middle of training you will be charged $20.00 that will need to be paid before you are able to sign up for a different cleient training course.
What are the steps for me to work with Pratt’s Answering Service through the Arise Platform?
1. Your first step is to fill click on the Apply Now button above or on our home page and answer all questions on the form. The questions that you will be answering are designed to give us an indication of what you are looking for in a work from home position and will be automatically emailed to us when you hit the submit button. Once you have submitted the form we will respond back to you within 48 hours to let you know if you would be a good fit in partnering with our company.
2. If you are chosen to move on to the next step you will receive a detailed email on what you should expect while partnering with Pratt's Answering Service. At the end of this email there will be a link to the second part of the application processes.
3. Once you have complete the second step of the application we will review it and make the final decision of whether you will be a good fit for partnering with Pratt's Answering Service.
4. If you are chosen to move on to the final step you will be emailed step by step instructions and the link to where you will need to go to register on the platform you will need to access the systems you need to do this job.
5. Once you have completed registration and have been accepted into Pratt's Answering Service you will receive an Agent Agreement contract via email from Pratt's Answering Service that will require your signature, and to be returned to Pratt’s Answering Service. 6. Once we have the contract you will then be able to request access to the Agent Portal on this website.
7. Once we have accepted you into our IBO you will have access to all of the current client opportunities. These change frequently so keep checking if nothing peeks your interest at first.
8. When you choose a client you may need to have a more extensive background check done and/or a drug test. (The cost for these are covered by the client. The background check can take up to 72 hours to come back.
9. You will need to run short computer systems check, complete any client specific pre-assessments and pay for the client specific training course before enrollment in the class is guaranteed.
7. You will then wait till the start date of the training certification course. Once you have completed your certification training you will then be able to start servicing your client and start making revenue.
Why is a National Background Check required and what are the deciding factors in passing?
A background check is routine requirement in any work-from-home industry. Since agents will be handling callers sensitive information our clients have high integrity standards and, thus, no one can become a Client Support Professional if they are convicted, plead guilty to or plead no contest to a felony or certain misdemeanor charges (such as fraud). Some clients have more stringent standards with respect to being eligible to service their particular account and you will be required to have a more stringent background check run with those particular clients. There are no charges incurred by you for these background checks. Most traffic violations do not constitute a disqualifying event. The request is submitted to the search partner via the Web an it can take up to two-business days to receive the results.
What will cause me to fail the background check?
Applicants with the following elements on their background check will not be accepted: Felony Records: Any records with dispositions of guilty, convicted, no contest / nolo contendere, adjudication withheld/deferred adjudication / probation before judgment (if currently under probation), pending, or outstanding warrant, or that have been negotiated down to a misdemeanor. Misdemeanor Records: Any records that are classified under any of the following elements:•Theft / Common Theft (of any kind)/shoplifting•Possession of drugs•Prostitution•Vandalism•Obstructing justice•Disorderly conduct•Assault /Battery•Breach of the Peace•Computer Crimes or breaches. If you have any records involving the above with dispositions of guilty, convicted, no contest / nolo contendere, adjudication withheld / deferred adjudication / probation before judgment (if currently under probation), pending, or outstanding warrant, you will not pass.
Will there be anything else required from me to begin Servicing a Client?
Some clients do require a CSP to be drug tested. The drug screening form is sent by a third-party vendor once you register on their site. Log on to the portal and click resume and select “Background Check Start Now” this action will take you to the First Advantage and register with your personal information. After you have registered you will get an email from FADVReports-NoReply@fadv.com (do not reply to the email as the email is automatically deleted) Add this email address to your safe senders list. If you do not receive your email check your spam/junk folder. Last resource would be to contact our Enrollment chat team via AVA support for further assistance. There is no cost to you for this test. You just need to take the form to with you when you go for the drug test.
How long is it before I can begin earning money using this platform?
Will I be paid for the time I spend in the client certification courses?
The Admissions process can be completed in as little as one day! Once you have completed the admissions process and joined Pratt's Answering Service you will then choose a client to work with. Certification courses required to service a client can take between two days and eight weeks to complete. Once you have completed and passed your certifications course you can immediately begin to service your client and earn revenue. Clients with the longer training times do pay for part of your training as you will be taking live calls during your training period.
The amount of time it takes to get through the training process often keeps someone interested in working from home from taking the steps to complete the training. Keep in mind when looking for a job on average it takes between 2 months and 6 months for someone to secure a position. During this time you are looking at different resources to find jobs that you are interested, completing applications, going for interviews and playing a waiting game of if you will be chosen for the position that you have spent a great deal of time trying to get. With this position once you pass the certification course you are guaranteed a position.
The IRS has certain restrictions that prevent certain companies from paying independent contractor training. Pratt’s Answering Service, LLC is not compensated for any time the CSP’s are in certification so therefore does not pay the CSP’s for the time spent in a client certification course. As an independent contractor, you are responsible for any certification needed that is required to educate yourself to properly provide your services to the client.
Clients that have the longer training times do offer a portion of the training that is paid during the last two to three weeks of training where you will be taking live calls during the training class period, If the client is paying for any portion of the training this revenue will be passed on to you.
We know that this maybe a sticking point in getting set up to do this but if you look at the time that it will take you for find a decent job, usually between a few months to a few years, how much will you be earning during that time? We are guessing while you are looking for a job you are making $0.00, Remember, you are investing in yourself, so if you have to spend the time in training without pay to earn your certification, it is saving you money from driving around searching for a job, and at least you know when you have completed the training you can immediately start working and earning revenue.
Will I receive any bonuses with this position?
Many clients do offer incentive bonuses based on meeting performance requirements. These incentives are passed on directly to CSPs. You will find out more about this as you are deciding on which client to pick to service.
Are there any other incentives to inviting others to join the Pratt’s Answering Service team?
Yes!! – We do not require for you to refer anyone to partner with our company, however, we do have a referral program where current and active CSP’s can receive bonuses for referrals to our team. Once you have joined our team make sure to ask us about our referral bonus plan.
How many hours can I work?
You can work as many hours as your client allows per the CAP. However, most client do have a minimum amount of hours per week requirement under the terms of the Statement of Work. In order to keep you statement of work in good standings you would nned to work the minimum hourly requirements. Most clients minimum requirement is 15 hours per week with some hours to be serviced on the weekend. Some clients you are able to service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The hours available for a specific client will be outlined in the Opportunity Announcements you will be able to view once you complete the Admissions Process.
Am I responsible for my own taxes?
Yes, as an independent contracted CSP, if you earn over $600 you will receive a 1099 at the end of the year from Pratt’s Answering Service LLC.
Can a Client Support Professional provide service on a part-time basis and service more than one client application?
Yes! Please keep in mind that you will be under a Statement of Work for each client that you choose to certify for. What this means is that you will be responsible to meet the minimum hours of work for each client per week in order to keep you statement of work in good standing. The minimum hours per week a client requires will be outlined in the Opportunity Announcements you will be able to view once you complete the Admission Process.
How do I get paid?
After you have completed the certification course and began servicing the client, Pratt’s Answering Service pays twice a month, on the 1st and 15th day of the month. You can either be paid by direct deposit or by a paper check the choice is yours. Clients pay between $9.00 and $13.00 an hour, or a set amount per call or per call minute; you will be paid on the higher amount of the hourly rate or the per call or per minute rate. You will also be paid any incentives and performance bonuses earned by your performance. Details will be provided on your Statement of Work. With incentives you can earn up to $16.00 per hour.
Can I write my expenses off on my taxes?
You will want to check with a tax professional to find out what is and is not allowed for the tax credit, but the short answer is Yes. Save all receipts for your start-up costs. You can get a tax credit for your home office and costs associated with running your home office.
If you have any questions that have not been answered above please contact us at email@example.com so that we may answer all the questions that you have.