Anyone that travels knows how frustrating it can be to reach someone at an airline call center. It doesn’t matter if you’re changing flights or searching for lost luggage, it seems that the more urgent the call is, the harder it is to reach someone.
According to Onholdwith.com, a site that catalogs tweets from Twitter users stuck on hold, airlines consistently rank near the top of the list (second only to telcos), placing callers on hold for extended periods. Of those, American Airlines frequently tops the list of offending companies. You can check out the full list of this year’s worst hold-time offenders here.
It should come as no surprise that excessive hold time is behind all of this negative sentiment towards American Airlines.
However the story for AA gets worse. Callers on hold expect to eventually reach an agent. When that doesn’t happen, frustration levels can go through the roof.
There are many strategies companies can implement to help reduce hold time, including implementing a call-back solution. However doing it right means adhering to a number of best practices. It’s counter-productive to offer to call customers back, only to place them right back on hold!
That’s what we call a “hold time fail”.