Thanks for holding: Customer service gets automated

altTired of being put on hold? Saritha Rai finds out about new software that could improve customers\' interactions with companies forever.
If you have ever tried to call a freephone number to check on that credit card charge, convert frequent flyer miles or solve your computer glitch, you may have been confounded by recorded expressions of exquisite politeness such as: \'We are sorry, we cannot connect you at this time, please call later.\'
Or: \'All our customer service executives are busy at this time, please hold.\'
Or perhaps: \'We are sorry for putting you on hold... thank you for choosing to hold... thank you for holding... thank you for your patience...\'

If California-headquartered BPO firm 24/7 Customer has its way, then wasted, frustrating interactions between consumers and companies will soon be a thing of the past. With a bulk of its operations in Bangalore and Manila, the BPO handles 10 million customer calls each month for 34 clients.