Innovation and IT, if the correct mix can be found, can yield substantial in-roads into providing good quality customer service. Recently I have come across the following service offered by a U.S. company that has the potential to improve customer service and loyalty at (what looks like) very little cost.

A new company, LucyPhone, is offering a solution whereby when put on hold, users can hang up, and are then called back when a customer service representative finally picks up.

What a customer experience that would be in contrast to the current “Your call is important to us. Please stay on the line and an agent will be with you shortly”. That message gets lost after a few minutes of unanswered holding. Frustration and annoyance generally sets in after a 5-10 minute hold. After 30 minutes or more of hold time all bets are off, that is if your customer has bothered to hang on the line.

In summary what this offering will do is:

  • Lucy will call you first then “patch” you through to the company.
  • Use the company’s phone menu just as you normally would. Get put on hold? Press ** and your phone will be disconnected but Lucy will stay on the line.
  • Once a live agent is on the line, Lucy will call you back immediately and connect you both. Get put on hold again, just press ** again!

While this service is currently available in the U.S. and Canada, wouldn’t it be good if other countries could be included? And the cost to the customer dialling – nothing, nil, zilch, nada.

Read more about this in a recent article in the New York Times (link).