The gethuman standards have been designed with simplicity and
directness as to eliminate ambiguity and enable testing and
certification. There may be more than one way to accomplish each, but
the result must be as follows:
The caller must always be able to dial 0 or to say "operator" to
queue for a human.
An accurate estimated wait-time, based on call traffic statistics
at the time of the call, should always be given when the caller
arrives in the queue. A revised update should be provided
periodically during hold time.
Callers should never be asked to repeat any information (name, full
account number, description of issue, etc.) provided to a human or an
automated system during a call.
When a human is not available, callers should be offered the option
to be called back. If 24 hour service is not available, the caller
should be able to leave a message, including a request for a call back
the following business day. Gold Standard: Call back the caller at a
time that they have specified.
Speech applications should provide touch-tone (DTMF) fall-back.
Callers should not be forced to listen to long/verbose prompts.
Callers should be able to interrupt prompts (via dial-through for
DTMF applications and/or via barge-in for speech applications)
whenever doing so will enable the user to complete his task more
Do not disconnect for user errors, including when there are no
perceived key presses (as the caller might be on a rotary phone);
instead queue for a human operator and/or offer the choice for
Default language should be based on consumer demographics for each
organization. Primary language should be assumed with the option for
the caller to change language. (i.e. English should generally be
assumed for the US, with a specified key for Spanish.) Gold Standard:
Remember the caller's language preference for future calls. Gold
Standard: Organizations should ideally support separate toll-free
numbers for each individual language.
All operators/representatives of the organization should be able
to communicate clearly with the caller (i.e. accents should not hinder
communication; representatives should have excellent diction and
While holding, allow callers to disable hold music; remember their
selection for future calls.
If ads or promotions are played, allow users to disable them.
Allow callers, where appropriate, to identify themselves via caller
ID and a securely defined PIN, instead of being required to enter long
account numbers each call.
Default to preferred language based on caller ID.
Support and publicize individual toll-free numbers for individual
Allow callers to access audio transcriptions of their calls via the
Call back the caller at the time that he/she specified.
If you have questions regarding gethuman.com or the
gethuman standard, please