United Public Employees.
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UPE News Item

005 Meet & Confer Update

DHA Phone Tree and Reschedule Changes

       UPE and DHA met and conferred over changes to the phone tree clients use while contacting DHA.  The Department plans to restructure the phone tree in order to make it easier for clients to self-identify themselves on the phone and select the proper line without having to speak with a clerical worker.  The Department intends for the changes to reduce the number of phone calls received by clerical staff.  

       At the same time, the Department plans to restructure how the Department handles calls to reschedule intakes and renewals.  Currently, different bureaus handle this process in different ways.  Some bureaus process reschedules with a voicemail box, while others handle them via live operators.  Under the new plan, the system will reroute all reschedule calls to a queue that will rotate the calls between dedicated reschedule staff at East Commerce, Greenhaven, and 28th St.  Workers at these locations will take the calls and reschedule clients at the appropriate Bureau.  Open lobby bureaus will continue to handle their own reschedules for clients already in the lobby.

       UPE questioned the Department about the potential increased workload this will cause for these clerical staff.  According to the Department, they expect these three Bureaus to receive up to 35 calls a day that previously went to other bureaus.  These calls will be evenly distributed amongst the three bureaus.  Each Bureau will staff between one and three workers at a time on the reschedule line.  The Department assured UPE that if there are any workload issues they would meet with UPE to help find a resolution. 

       Clerical at the three bureaus will receive refresher training in how to reschedule in LIMS and SMART in the next week.  The Department will go-live with the new structure on December 23, 2019 in order to take advantage of low call volume around Christmas.      

       UPE thanks 005 Governing Board Members Jennifer Avalo and Monica Stephens for representing our members at this meeting. 

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