Wait times reduced for unemployment compensation claimants

Published 3:27 pm Thursday, March 17, 2016

A new feature recently introduced by the Alabama Department of Labor is cutting wait times for unemployment compensation claimants and improving efficiency.

Alabama Department of Labor Commissioner Fitzgerald Washington said over the last few weeks, claimants who have been calling ADOL to file unemployment compensation claims or inquire about existing unemployment compensation claims have had the option to remain on the line to wait for assistance or to provide a call back number and have a staff member return their call, without losing their place in line.

Since the feature has been in use, call wait times have decreased by an average of 11 minutes for inquiry calls and nine minutes for initial claims calls.

Additionally, the number of inquiry calls that were answered by staff increased from 52 percent to 88 percent, and the number of claims calls that were answered by staff increased from 48 percent to 85 percent.

“This new feature is really exciting for our claimants,” Washington said in a release. “We know it’s frustrating to call a government agency and be put on hold for a long time. This feature allows us to still assist claimants, but it also allows them to go about their day without being on hold. We can see that it’s working by the increase number of calls we’re able to answer and that significantly fewer people are hanging up.”

Prior to the feature’s introduction, 48 percent of inquiry callers hung up, and after its implementation, only seven percent did so.

Comparatively, 49 percent of claims callers hung up prior to the call back feature’s implementation, and after only eight percent hung up.

Total talk times have also been reduced by up to two minutes.

To file an unemployment compensation claim, call (866) 234-5382 and to inquire regarding an existing claim call (800) 361-4524.

Claims can also be filed online at www.labor.alabama.gov.