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What Is The Average Hold Time In A Call Center? (FAQ)

Every year, Americans waste over 900 million hours on hold. In addition, the average person will spend 43 days on hold in their lifetime, which is about a month and a half. That’s almost the equivalent of two trips to the Tour de France. Even though the average person doesn’t spend a lot of time on the phone, hold times continue to plague contact centers. And the average person’s patience level is declining.

One study by American Express showed that the average consumer will wait 13 minutes to speak to a live executive. In contrast, a survey by Arise found that consumers are more than happy with a two-minute hold time. But, if the wait is longer, they’ll be more likely to hang up. And, as a result, this metric is becoming increasingly important for call centers.

A recent survey by Arise and American Express found that an average consumer spends over 40 days in a call center. That’s the equivalent of growing a summer squash! Meanwhile, an average call center holds out a customer for 13 minutes. However, most consumers are only willing to wait two or three minutes on hold before becoming frustrated. A study also revealed that 57% of customers find waiting on hold time to be frustrating. This metric is essential for improving customer service.

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