New Study Names Top 10 Worst Companies to Call in 2018

December 11, 2018

TORONTO, ON – December 11, 2018 –, the website that scans Twitter for real-time complaints about being put on hold, today released its annual list of hold-time offenders.

The website, launched by Fonolo, collected over 165,000 posts containing the phrase “on hold with” from Twitter, a platform customers turn to as a platform for complaint when they are put on hold by a call center. The study confirms that a) customers are increasingly turning to social media to publicly out companies for poor customer service handling; and b) a benchmark of this poor service is placing a customer on hold. For 2018, Verizon has been named the worst company to call, based on hold-time complaints from callers.

Last year, the report revealed Delta Airlines to have the highest instances of complaint Tweets about putting customers on hold. While the airline has dropped out of the number one spot in 2018, it still takes a prominent third spot on the annual list as a hold-time offender.

The complete top-10 list of reported offenders is:

    1. Verizon
    2. Virgin Media
    3. Delta Airlines
    4. United States Postal Service (USPS)
    5. Telus
    6. Ikea
    7. PayPal
    8. AT&T
    9. Bank of America
    10. Apple


The data, collected over a 12-month period, revealed that customers phoning into call centers most frequently report waiting on hold with companies from the telecommunications, airline, and financial industries. Other industries, such as travel, retail, and shipping, were also identified in this report. The study also revealed the industries with the most significant hold-time offenders:

    1. Telecommunications
    2. Airlines
    3. Finance
    4. Retail
    5. Shipping
    6. Government
    7. Services
    8. Travel/Accommodations
    9. Utilities
    10. Electronics


According to the 2018 American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) Telecommunications Report, customer satisfaction with call centers remains a ‘low point’ for the telecommunications industry and, like in the case of subscription television services, continues to decline: ”

Like all telecom industries, call centers are the worst part of the customer experience.” And, specifically for wireless service providers, “contacting customer service by phone is the principal pain point for customers.” “ highlights how dramatically a poor call center experience can negatively impact a company’s brand,” said Jason Bigue, Chief Operating Officer, Fonolo.

“Even with all of the support channels offered by the modern contact center, voice remains the single most important channel for resolving customer complaints. For companies that value customer loyalty, it’s imperative that they avoid putting callers on hold.”

To see real-time statistics from social media-savvy customers on hold, visit Or, if you’re a business interested in eliminating hold-time forever, read more here about Fonolo’s call-back solutions.  


About Fonolo Fonolo, the industry leader in cloud-based call-back solutions, has revolutionized the way contact centers interact with customers through web, mobile, and voice. The company’s patented call-back technology empowers customers with an innovative alternative to waiting on hold. Fonolo’s award-winning solutions are trusted by a growing list of call centers that aim to enhance the customer experience. From Fortune 500 companies to SMBs, Fonolo is valued by customers for its scalability, expertise, and proven ROI. Visit to learn how your call center can reduce abandonment rates, smooth out call volume spikes, and lower costs. For media inquiries, please contact:


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