Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Puts call-centre employee on hold waiting for caller to get back to phone
  (+10, -1)(+10, -1)
(+10, -1)
  [vote for,

When you call some organisation you are always put on hold. Meanwhile you have to wait. Even with the speakerphone on with Vivaldi interrupted every x seconds with 'sorry, a little longer still' is annoying.

A little box with a prerecorded message in the 8 major languages (select only 1 at a time) that will ask the called party to knock three times shortly on the receiver which will make the telephone of the caller ring. "The person who called you is away from the telephone. Please knock on your microphone three short times, like this: knock-knock-knock or whistle and the caller will come to the phone immediately. Sorry for the inconvinience." A reaction on some key will not work for some operators because the can only *receive* calls and not dial anything. Therefore we have to rely on voice.

It will be a little box with a RJ11 plug (that little plug that is compatible with most phone connectors worldwide) on both ends and a switch with [wait] and [release]. Once you reached the end of the path in a call-centre labyrinth and you are waiting in the right queue, you flip the box on wait and go do other things. Once you get through the phone rings and you can talk.

The technology in the little box can be less than $5. A chip with the 8 prerecorded messages, a chip listening for the three knocks or the whistle (if one method doesn't work, the other will) and generating pulses to make the telephone ring, a switch and that's about it.

This solution on our end of the line is better than waiting for things to change on the other end because it is not in their interest. The suggestion by McFrank on August 10 in response to the waiting party line idea by jutta is much better but relies on the willingness of the other party. You will always have 'user-unfriendly' organisations like government agencies etc. that will never implement a call-back routine.

This will always work, also when you are calling a friend who says 'hang on, there is someone at the door', while the friend called you in the first place. You just put him 'on hold' and make him listen to the instructions.

Ideally, this gadget should also work with call waiting. While you have a customer care service on hold on one line, you are answering a call by a friend on another until you get a ring from the customer care service that you have made it through the queue.

rrr, Oct 16 2001

call-back feature http://www.halfbake...ting_20party_20line
the idea by McFrank in reaction to 'waiting party line' [rrr, Oct 16 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]

A bakeable list of counter-ideas. http://web.tampabay...rchsr/happytech.htm
If people would follow these rules, there would be a -lot- less hold time. [StarChaser, Oct 16 2001, last modified Oct 21 2004]


       I like it.   

       To collect your croissant, tap your middle mouse button three times and whistle.   

       Perhaps rather than having multiple languages, it would be more convenient to have a variety of pre-recorded messages, depending on how nasty you intend to be to the person on the other end of the phone.
cp, Oct 16 2001

       Don't blame us. When everyone is on a call, nobody can answer yours. We do the best we can.   

       StarChaser the Tech Support Tyger
StarChaser, Oct 19 2001

       [cp] While you are on hold you haven't spoken to anyone yet. Difficult to determine how nasty you want to get. And besides, being nasty to them is usually not productive. [waugsqueke] I am not sure they will hang up, I think they will like it. They only have to whistle and within seconds the caller responds. A caller who is *not* frustrated and irritated to the bone because he was on hold for 30 minutes. A fresh one, a normal human being. You'd only had to explain to him who he was calling with. After 30 minutes on hold many problems are certainly not that important anymore. But for the ones that are important, this gadget is a must-have. [PeterSealy] The idea is to fit this mechanism in a little box that can be used worldwide and costs less than $10. It's not on the market, I would like to know why not.
rrr, Oct 20 2001

       Wow. I can be quite wordy.
rrr, Nov 29 2006

       The goal of many call-back systems isn't to better connect client and agent, but to get the client to give up.
Voice, Jun 06 2022


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