What is Average Hold Time (AHLDT)?

Average hold time (AHLDT) is a call center metric that measures the average length of time agents put callers on hold during a customer call. It is one of many call statistics provided by the automatic call distributor (ACD). It can be calculated by date range as well as at the agent and team level.

Average hold time is important to monitor because putting customers on hold frequently or for long periods of time is detrimental to the customer experience. Agents put callers on hold for a variety of reasons - sometimes they need to find a supervisor to help them, they need to switch applications to find or process customer data, or they might be collecting themselves before continuing a conversation with a contentious caller. Some hold time is understandable, but if an agent has a consistently high average hold times, they probably need some training or coaching.

In addition to impacting customer experience, average hold time also affects staffing and scheduling decisions, and therefore the bottom line. This is because average hold time is part of the average handle time calculation, which factors in talk time, hold time, and wrap time to determine the average length of time it takes for an agent to serve a customer. Workforce managers use average handle time as one of the metrics that help them to figure out how many total agents they need and also to develop agent schedules. Because of this, average handle time receives a lot of attention from call center leaders and when it's above target, average hold time is one of the factors they analyze.

How NICE can help

NICE CXone is the market leading contact center software in use by thousands of customers of all sizes around the world. Our solutions provide the data call center leaders to make sound decisions, including average hold time. CXone is a cloud native, unified suite of applications designed to help a company holistically run its contact (or call) center operations. CXone includes:

Omnichannel Routing – routing and interaction management. These solutions include an automatic call distributor (ACD), interactive voice response (IVR), interaction channel support and proactive outbound dialer.

Workforce Optimization – unlocks the potential of your team. These solutions include workforce management (WFM), quality management (QM), recording and performance management (PM).

Analytics – turns insights into results by making data relevant, easy to consume and actionable. These solutions include interaction analytics, customer surveys, reporting and performance management.

CXone also includes pre-defined CRM integrations and UCaaS integrations with most leading solutions on the market. These integrations provide a holistic contact center software solution capable of elevating customer experiences for companies of all sizes.