How to place people on hold

Yes it is as simple as hitting the hold button but, as always, there is a better way!

Over the summer we've been working closely with a call centre client to improve the experience for their callers. This included providing a report on the current system and offering a full solution to make customer service improvements, from rationalising the IVR routing scripts to recording the new IVR messages with a professional female voiceover; in addition we made a recommendation to train staff on how to place callers On Hold.

 Now stick with us here, yes it is as simple as hitting the hold button on the phone but how you prepare the caller before placing them on hold has an impact on how they feel and the customer satisfaction level. Think about it how often are you unceremoniously dumping someone on hold without any warning?

 It’s much better to explain (even apologise if the interaction isn't going well) before placing the caller on hold, something along the lines of:

 I’m going to place you On Hold, I’ll be back with you as soon as possible and won’t keep you any longer than necessary. Then place the call On Hold

When you return to the call: Hi [callers name] thanks for being On Hold, sorry to keep you.

Simple but effective and callers will appreciate it. Test it out. Get your teams together, brief them, then at the end of the week hold a team meeting and see the responses they have had.