Sorry about the customer service kick, but I called NStar today to resolve a billing issue. The automated voice said there was a short wait, but if I wanted, they would call me back when it was my turn. Revolutionary!
Although I did have to type in my number (didn't they know it already), and record my name, and some other step I've forgotten, it was a breeze.
I did stuff around the house and a few minutes later the phone rang. I was now next in line, and had to wait about 10 seconds for someone to pick up (which annoyed me slightly, and then made me feel like a spoiled brat).
There is absolutely no reason every single company who routinely has people on hold shouldn't be using this technology. It makes customers so much happier.
Now, if DMV's could let you start doing this so you didn't have to sit miserably for 4 hours just waiting to take your driver's test...(true story, this just happened to the woman across from me in Boulder...she missed her scheduled road test).