Waiting On Hold

I have opined many times in my writings this past decade that because of the catastrophic decline in high paying manufacturing jobs in America during the past forty years, which has resulted in the degeneration in the middle class livelihood, the next recession/depression would make the Great Depression look like it was still part of the Roaring ‘20s.  It doesn’t take a Nobel prize-winning economist to comprehend that because the majority of jobs left in this country are in the service industry, that when people are forced to stop spending because of declining economic conditions, all those service jobs would dry up in a chain reaction of financial events.

Having spent ninety minutes this past week, talking to five different sales reps with AT&T, and still not getting accomplished the reason for my call in the first place, I became slightly agitated to say the least while waiting on hold each time for the next sales person to answer my call.  By the time I spoke with the fourth person, who apologized for this lack of appropriate service, I told her that at least it gave me the topic for my next blog entry.

Granted, my solution to solving America’s unemployment problem involves service jobs, and they are most likely low paying jobs as well, however, judging by how often a person spends waiting on hold for what seems like every phone call made to a commercial establishment, every business in America desperately needs to double at the very least the number of people they employ in their customer service department.  How much time is wasted in America every year by the amount of time every citizen is on hold while waiting to talk to an actual person.  This incessant waiting on hold is not just a commercial industry problem, as any one who has to deal with our government at any level, especially Social Security, can testify to.

What is really irritating is to be informed every thirty seconds that I am on hold waiting to talk to someone.  After five or ten minutes of constantly being reminded that I am on hold, I find myself cussing out the maddening automated voice.  My ranting at a robotic message does not accomplish anything but it sure makes me feel better.

Steven H. Spring





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