230 new unemployment compensation employees start answering calls, more being hired

Health

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A new phase of the state’s customer service improvement initiative for unemployment compensation begins Monday. About 230 new customer service representatives will now be available to answer incoming calls.

This is to ease frustration people have had in getting unemployment issues resolved and to make it easier to get in touch with the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry.

Existing staff members will shift their focus to exclusively work on outstanding claim issues.

The new employees will be able to answer basic questions via phone.

Those with complex problems requiring more help will choose whether they want to be emailed or called by the claims staff, and then given a tracking number to see where their inquiry is in the process of getting resolved.

The department is going to keep adding staff until there are 1,000 customer service representatives or all calls are answered.

This is all part of the department’s transition from a 40-year-old system to a modern computer system in June.

State officials are working with InspiriTec to reach this goal; the company specializes in employing professionals with disabilities, veterans and those who are disadvantaged.

Hiring for the unemployment compensation program is ongoing.

The Department of Labor & Industry will also be hosting virtual workshops to help make sense of the transition and all of its features. You can find a link to those workshops here.

User guides are also available and any questions about the new system can be submitted through this link.

Anyone interested is encouraged to reach out to their local PA CareerLink location for more information.

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