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DWP Makes Headlines with a Change to its Music on Hold - Mark Winter - Blog

DWP Makes Headlines with a Change to its Music on Hold

DWP Makes Headlines with a Change to its Music on Hold

Now you might be wondering, “why is that??”.  Music on-hold is important to the nation…clearly! There’s nothing worse than a repeated loop of Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons”, especially when you’re on hold for up to an hour. Which is something the Department for Work and Pensions recognised – and by engaging and working with specialist customer experience agency Premier CX, they listened to what their callers really want.


Music is a powerful subject, but often isn’t seen as an influential factor in the overall customer experience. As individuals; music emotes, it brings back memories, reminds us of loss, love and happy times. But when you hear the same track, even if you love it, repeated again, and again, and again, and again…well you get the picture…it becomes a real frustration. And that’s what many callers experience every day. 

By working with Premier CX, the DWP made a step in the right direction – the project consisted of initial consultancy, where their existing on-hold experience was reviewed. Recommendations on improvements and changes were presented and approved and finally, after internal testing and feedback – there was implementation. The mix of tracks was created by Premier CX’s in-house studio team and delivered to the client, assisted by BT Global Services.

Senior CX Consultant Sally Greenaway said “The DWP recognised that their telephony experience was challenging - particularly for callers with Autism. This was exacerbated by long wait times and a short repetitive music track. Our recommendation was to keep arousal levels low, with music that’s inclusive and appropriate for all DWP callers; easy to listen to and doesn’t easily become repetitive. This was achieved by creating a 20-minute mix of 8 instrumental tracks, with a pace and balance to reflect the time in queue.”

Media coverage, really hits this home. The Guardian covers the DWP’s music change in this mornings’ article; “Benefits hotline drops anxiety-inducing Vivaldi clip as hold music”, where they explain that the DWP has already received positive responses to the music. A spokesperson for the DWP said; “We tested it with claimants in jobcentres and they overwhelmingly preferred it. It was seen as more calming and peaceful and light…”

If you want to review how your music effects your callers state of mind, and how this can be improved, get in touch with Premier CX and see how we can help you.

Publish Date: March 25, 2020 8:21 AM

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