Apr 24, 2015
ASD Financial Manager, Dara Dix, has been a dedicated and indispensable member of the ASD team for more than 18 years. Dara was hired by ASD Founders, Martin and Barbara Czachor, in 1997. She has helped our company grow by providing exceptional customer service and support to ASD clients. Dara assists clients with all of their billing needs and works with directors to customize their payment preferences. She also assists funeral homes in using our service more efficiently. By utilizing ASD’s technical tools, working with our rewards partners and referring other funeral homes to ASD, funeral directors can greatly reduce their bill. Dara helps to familiarize our clients with all of the features and options available to them. Her caring and hospitable nature has led many local funeral directors to stop by ASD to spend time with Dara in person. We are honored to feature Dara as this month’s employee spotlight.
Click here to read last month’s spotlight
Can you describe some of your early experiences when you first began working at ASD?
When I first started at ASD, we had just recently become funeral home exclusive so I had an advantage of learning just about the funeral home industry. I worked with Barbara Czachor who taught me so much about this business. Barbara told me in the very beginning, “fasten your seatbelt, this company is going to take you for a ride”. Boy was that a correct statement! Sharing an office with Barbara also gave me the experience to watch how this family interacts with each other on a daily basis. I believe that is one of the biggest reasons for our success.
How has ASD changed since you first began working here?
So much has changed. With technology, we are able to get messages to clients quickly and they are able to respond back just as fast. There are still some clients that don’t use technology and we accommodate this by dialing out and reading them their messages over the phone. For the most part, however, our clients really appreciate ASD’s technology. Our newest feature is Mobile FH™. This is a feature within our mobile app which allows a director to call back a family from their cell phone number, but display the funeral home number on their Caller ID.
What do you find most rewarding about your job at ASD?
My team. I am fortunate to have a great team! We love to help clients save on their bills when possible. I have watched clients cut their bills down and that means we are helping them. My favorite part is when a client tells us how good our service is and how they are willing to work with us to cut down their costs to stay on service. It is so rewarding to know what we have accomplished as a Team.
What are some of the ways you help ASD clients use our service more efficiently?
Using the Freedom Plus Plan. Making sure the client is using all the money-saving features in the plan such as no answer call forwarding. Having this feature and entering on-call information via our website or mobile app offers such a big savings to our clients. Dial delay is one of the best features for saving money. This feature gives funeral directors time to respond to their messages, eliminating a billable dial out. We also offer completely adjustable call plans to our clients. We actively monitor accounts to make sure clients are on the right call plans for their needs and will reach out to them to recommend upgrading or downgrading a plan.
Can you describe some of the new billing features that have been added in recent years?
One of the biggest additions to our Freedom Plus plan over the past few years is that we can now accept credit cards. This was a big request from our clients and we listened. Clients can store their credit cards through our website and pay their bills online. They can also use their checking accounts to pay bills on our website.
We also have recently introduced paperless billing. This has become a very popular option as many directors have experienced problems with their mail. We can have your bill emailed to you the night we print them. I also love Solicitor Shield™. Since I started, we had clients on smaller call plans asking us what they could do about solicitor calls running their bills up. Now, our clients have the ability to block those solicitor numbers so they cannot come through to us and they are not billed.
What are some of your personal hobbies and interests?
My most recent hobby is being a grandmother. What an experience! Many of the clients I speak to on a regular basis know this fact about me. I talk about my grandson and soon to be granddaughter all the time.
A photo of Dara’s Grandson, Shane, during a visit to our office.
I also love animals. I have 2 cats and 2 dogs that my husband and I rescued. I have volunteered in the past at our local animal shelter and I like to encourage adoption. There are just too many innocent animals whose owners can no longer take care of them or that were abused and just need love.
Each month, ASD will feature a different employee on our blog. Be sure to check back to see who May’s Employee Spotlight will feature.
- Related Reading: 18 ASD Employees Share Why They Find Their Careers Rewarding
About The Author
Jess Farren (Fowler)
Jess Farren (Fowler) is a Public Relations Specialist and Staff Writer who has been a part of the ASD team since 2003. Jess manages ASD’s company blog and has been published in several funeral trade magazines. She has written articles on a variety of subjects including communication, business planning, technology, marketing and funeral trends. You can contact Jess directly at Jess@myASD.com