The Current

'Your Call Is Important To Us': Designing the best 'on hold' experience

Today we are looking into the people who spend time researching what will keep you 'on hold'. People build careers or empires or fat bank accounts, offering what they think are the right 'on hold' messages. The Current's Josh Bloch delves into the tricks and trade of those who keep us on-the-line… By Design.
The Current's Josh Bloch brings us "Your Call Is Important To Us", a documentary all about the experience of being on hold. (João Paulo Corrêa de Carvalho, Flickr cc)

It's believed that most of us will spend literally hours on hold - every year. That's despite the fact most people find the experience incredibly annoying...  hanging up just 2 minutes after being put on hold. 

But companies and government agencies are in the business of getting you to linger longer... that's why a whole industry has sprung up around designing the best - or least irritating "on hold" experience. 

A survey by an American texting service found that on average, we spend 13 hours on hold each year.

As part of our series.By Design, The Current's Josh Bloch brings us a special documentary called "Your Call Is Important To Us" about being On Hold.

Do you have stories - bad ones, or good ones, but probably bad ones --- about being on hold?

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