We’re heading into a new year, and that means it’s time to reassess your business practices. It’s time to stop doing what’s not working and start doing more of what is working. It’s also the time to consider new strategies, tactics and tools to help you work smarter, faster, more efficiently—and more profitably.

In that context, consider how a virtual receptionist can help you up your game in 2017 and beyond. You may be launching a new business venture in the new year. You may have big plans to expand your territory in the months ahead. Or maybe you just need to take more time for you and spend less time executing non-mission critical tasks that nevertheless must still get done. Whatever the case, a virtual receptionist can help you hit the mark more profitably.

Consider the Pareto Principle. Also known as the 80-20 Rule, the Pareto Principle as applied to business says that the top 20 percent of your activities produce 80 percent of your revenue. With this in mind, does it make sense to answer your corporate phones and complete mundane tasks? For the overwhelming majority of companies—regardless of size—the answer is no.

The quandary is you may not get enough calls—or you may not have a big enough budget—to justify taking on the expense of hiring a receptionist to man the phones, even part time. With an eye on profitability, you’re not seeing the ROI of bringing on someone to handle administrative tasks even though you are drowning to keep up with them yourself. That’s understandable—and it’s also where a virtual receptionist can help.

A virtual receptionist can pay attention to details you might miss in the daily grind—details that could open doors of opportunity or help stop leakage. A virtual receptionist, for example, can keep track of your incoming call history to manage spikes in call volumes seasonally, common themes of the incoming calls and more. A virtual receptionist can also manage online faxes and e-mails, giving you more time to drive profits.

It’s been said over and over again that it’s easier to retain an existing customer than it is to acquire a new customer—and studies prove it. A virtual receptionist can help you keep existing customers by not dropping the call-answering balls. Virtual receptionists guarantee your phones are answered professionally day and night despite sick days, personal days or weather issues.

Ultimately, a virtual receptionist can help you spend more of your time on revenue-generating activities and hand off tasks like answering phones, writing letters, taking orders, handling e-mails, and the like. Don’t let the name “virtual receptionist” fool you. These professionals do far more than answer phones and can set you free to focus more on the bottom line.