Average Wait for the Cable Guy? Survey Says 4.8 Hours

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Sitting on your duff waiting to get cable hooked up is not just annoying — it can take a bite out of your wallet, too.

The average cable appointment wait in the U.S. is 4.8 hours, which costs consumers about $210 worth of their time, according to a recent survey. Furthermore, 49% of consumers had to cancel or reschedule their personal plans due to an in-home appointment.

Bear in mind, however, that the survey was commissioned by TOA Technologies, which sells workforce-management software to service providers that allegedly provides more accurate scheduling. The company commissioned a similar survey last year (see Waiting for the Cable (or Telco) Guy).

Updated: The amount of money the TOA survey calculates consumers lose while waiting is based on “the respondents’ valuation of time,” which averaged $43.90 per hour, the company says.

Other findings from TOA’s survey: 81% of consumers wait two or more days per year, and 26% report waiting 5 or more days per year for in-home appointments. Of American consumers who said they’ve waiting for an in-home appointment, 48% called to complain about their wait time. The survey of about 3,000 people in the U.S., the United Kingdom and Germany was fielded in mid-August by research firm Vision Critical.

Yeah, it’s a pain waiting for a cable or telco technician. But it’s just as big a hassle to wait for a plumber, or to take your car in to get serviced.

Perhaps the key takeaway for cable companies from the survey is this: There’s a great opportunity to exceed your customers’ expectations, by completing appointments as quickly and accurately as possible.