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Citizen Engagement Blog

Making Short Work of Unemployment Insurance Citizen Engagement

These are the calls that no one wants to make:

  • That first call to establish eligibility for unemployment insurance (UI).
  • The call to file an initial claim for UI benefits.
  • And all the follow-up calls to maintain eligibility, schedule required appointments with the local program office or resolve issues.

better citizen engagement in human servicesIt’s bad enough to be jobless through no fault of your own. Insult is added to injury if the customer support system for the UI program requires waiting on hold for a representative, standing in a long line at the local office, or accessing a website that doesn’t provide interactive, live support.

Meanwhile, state agencies are struggling with their own challenges. Overburdened staff are frantically trying to handle questions and complete new enrollments, while administrators must oversee compliance with Federal and state requirements, including preventing improper payments.  

Working it out with advanced engagement technology

UI program administrators don’t have to be dependent on old-school processes and technologies, and disparate enrollment and weekly compliance systems can be a thing of the past. In recent years, labor teams have focused on the integration of website tools to bring their UI programs into the 21st century. Today, seamless voice and digital self-service and live representative messaging solutions make it faster, easier, and more convenient for people to get information and solve problems related to all aspects of UI – from the web, to the mobile phone, to the mobile website.

There’s much for the agency to do behind the scenes once a constituent submits their enrollment or weekly check-in, and agencies are burdened with all aspects of the process to validate eligibility, maintain accurate data, and protect against fraud – all without inundating their workforce or exceeding their budget. And once the constituent is approved, they need to ensure a positive experience while managing compliance – in other words, serve all constituents, provide benefits to those eligible, and manage those ineligible through the right channels in the kindest way possible.

Imagine if constituents eligible for benefits, as well as program administrators, could use their preferred method – mobile phone, home phone, computer, or tablet – to access the support solution and resolve their issue in a convenient, flexible manner – across multiple devices and platforms, at the times of their choosing. If they need agent assistance, it’s there, but by using powerful and intuitive technologies they can usually handle these tasks themselves, and in most cases would prefer to:

  • Enroll in the UI program
  • Determine current eligibility for benefits
  • Check the status of benefit payments
  • Schedule meetings
  • Verify information

Did I just say that UI participants have the option to more quickly self-manage their benefit eligibility and payment on the go, and the state worker time is freed up to manage other pressing issues? That’s right, it’s a reality available today!

Subsequently, the state added Contact Solutions’ behavior-based Adaptive Personalization technology, which tailors each interaction based on constituent history and behavior. Personalization includes preferred language and shorter authorization, for example.

Results include:

  • 76% of all calls were successfully personalized
  • Average duration of all IVR calls was reduced by 18%
  • Personalized calls are 37% shorter than non-personalized calls, on average

Learn More!

Read our "Government Game Changer" case study.

Download Here

Topics: Industry Insights Human Services