On Hold with BT

Major provider of telecommunications networks and services in the UK, BT have been named as having the worst on hold music in the UK. Shocking I know! I can almost hear the intake of breath as people read the page. The survey includes many facts with 81% saying that music is a mood enhancer and the best way to psyche yourself up it seems that now is the time for BT to start improving its customer service.

This isn’t the first time that BT have been named and shamed for their poor customer service. Back in 2009 a study of 5,000 people revealed the communications giant as having the nation’s worst customer service and according to new research commissioned by the UK’s leading free conference call service provider, Powwownow it’s clear to see that little has changed.

The survey of 2000 UK office workers reveals the psychological effects that music can have on individuals within the workplace and how this can impact everyday tasks such as responding to emails and specific meetings such as creative brainstorms and target updates.

The majority of respondents from across all age groups and sexes believe music to have mood enhancing effects, however, generally pick the music they listen to based on how they currently feel and not by how they want to feel.

With the main reason for using head phones within the office being to help an individual concentrate, it is surprising that only 23% of respondents said they have music playing within the workplace.

Pop was identified as the best genre of music to enhance your mood; making you feel happy, confident and uplifted.

Classical music was identified as the best genre to ensure you are focused and pop music is the top choice for motivation with the recently named ‘most downloadable track of all time in the UK’, Pharrell Williams’ Happy as the most popular song choice for often mundane tasks such as responding to emails.

Jacqui Keep, Powwownow’s Content Marketing Manager explains, “Companies can really benefit from understanding both the good and bad effects that music can have on employees and customers; the respondents in our survey were keen to identify those brands that were getting it right and also those who were getting it really wrong. When we asked those in the survey who had the worst on-hold music, BT took the title!”

A huge 63% of respondents admitted that they do not consciously think about how they want to feel before going into a meeting although according to the research, men are more likely to consider this than women.

With over a third of workers saying they listen to music to psyche themselves up for something important, pop music was acknowledged as the best genre for creative meetings as well as management meetings, target updates and employee reviews. However, classical was the genre of choice for delivering bad news.


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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine