Inland Revenue pilots callback system
28 August 2008
Inland Revenue pilots callback system to help customers
Inland Revenue’s Call Centre has introduced a new callback system to make it easier for customers to get the answers to their queries.
“We have been looking at a number of initiatives over the last twelve months to improve Call Centre performance,’’ said Deputy Commissioner Service Delivery, Carolyn Tremain.
“We are aware that some customers are facing unacceptable waiting times on hold, and we apologise unreservedly to people who have been unable to contact us in a timely fashion,’’ she said.
The callback system was launched last week, and is being piloted on some Inland Revenue 0800 numbers. Callers are told the estimated wait time, and they can choose whether to stay in the queue or ask to be called back.
‘’If they opt for a callback, the system will hold their place in the queue, and call them back automatically when they reach the head of the queue.’’
A progressive roll-out is expected to deliver the service through all Inland Revenue 0800 numbers by the end of the year.
Sixty per cent of customers offered the service so far have chosen to use it, and Ms Tremain said customer feedback had been extremely positive.
“”Customers are telling us that they are able to put the time they are saving to good use, then have their queries answered when we call them back.’’
Ms Tremain said the callback service is one of several initiatives the department is considering to manage call volumes.
During June and July 2008, Inland Revenue answered 13 per cent, or 88,000, more customer calls than for the same period a year earlier.
‘’We’re getting up to 27,000 calls a day, over 104,000 calls a week, and in the last year to June 30, we answered almost five million calls.’’
Ms Tremain said the Call Centre is given additional resources in peak season to help answer calls.
She said calls to Inland Revenue can be complex. ”We try to answer customer queries thoroughly so that they do not need to ring us back. We take as long as is needed to try to ensure the customer’s query has been fully answered.’’