Report 2010-112 Recommendations and Responses in 2015-041

Report 2010-112: Employment Development Department: Its Unemployment Program Has Struggled to Effectively Serve California's Unemployed in the Face of Significant Workload and Fiscal Challenges

Department Number of Years Reported As Not Fully Implemented Total Recommendations to Department Not Implemented After One Year Not Implemented as of 2014-041 Response Not Implemented as of Most Recent Response
Employment Development Department 4 9 5 3 2

Recommendation To: Employment Development Department

To further enhance its corrective action planning process as a means of improving the unemployment program, the department should establish several key performance targets or benchmarks that are tied to each specific corrective action, to effectively gauge the impact of the actions on its goal of achieving the acceptable levels related to the timeliness measures.

Response

In the October 2014 annual status report, EDD communicated that a Business Process Innovation Team developed measurable milestones for each required Corrective Action Plan (CAP) included in the California's 2015 State Quality Service Plan (SQSP). This plan included the Unemployment Insurance (UI) portion of the SQSP narrative and CAPs for First Payment Promptness and Non-monetary Determination Timeliness. A copy of the 2015 SQSP will be provided upon request. Subsequent to our last annual report, we received notification that the United States Department of Labor approved the 2015 SQSP on September 30, 2014 (see Attachment).

To demonstrate our commitment to develop measurable milestones, an Integrity Team, with representation from the UI Branch, Tax Branch, and Policy, Accountability and Compliance Branch, developed additional measurable milestones for each required CAP in California's 2016 SQSP. The multi-branch team allows for insight from staff most knowledgeable in the areas of operation related to different federal performance measures.

The team meets throughout the year to brainstorm additional actions to develop into measurable milestones for each specific CAP. Maintaining performance measures for each specific milestone allows for the tracking and analysis of improvements in performance before, during, and after the implemented action. Through this process, EDD is able to effectively gauge the impact of each milestone related to the timeliness performance measures.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: September 2014
  • Response Date: September 2015

Recommendation To: Employment Development Department

As part of an overall strategy to limit the number of calls it receives while still providing timely and effective customer service, the department should use existing data and additional data from the new phone system to gain a better understanding of why people request to speak to an agent. Using this information, the department should further develop strategies and measurable goals related to achieving a reduction in call volumes. For example, to ensure that virtually all calls are able to gain access to the voice response portion of its new phone system, the department should monitor the volume of blocked call attempts and work with its phone system vendor if necessary to increase the system's capacity.

Response

This recommendation has been partially implemented. To explore strategies to reduce call volume, EDD is conducting UI Self-Service Options Surveys before and after implementation of the UI OnlineSM self-services phase of the UI Modernization Continued Claims Redesign Project. The first survey's population included people who called the UI claims' main English and Spanish telephone lines (not the automated self-service line) between June 28 and July 2, 2013. The online survey was conducted in both English and Spanish from July 26 through September 10, 2013. Results of the first survey showed that the most common reasons claimants called were to obtain claim status information (36% of respondents), file or reopen a claim (21%), certify for benefits (20%), and get EDD Debit CardSM or benefit payment information (18%).

The roll-out of the UI OnlineSM self-service options to claimants began in April and was complete in July 2015. To allow for a full year of customer experience, EDD will conduct the second survey in early 2016 to identify claimants' reasons for calling, reasons for requesting an agent instead of using the self-service options, and suggestions for improving the self-service options.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Not Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: Summer of 2016
  • Response Date: September 2015

Recommendation To: Employment Development Department

To evaluate the effectiveness of its other efforts to provide services to claimants in ways that do not require them to speak to agents, such as Web-Cert and Tele-Cert, the department should periodically summarize and assess the more robust management information available under its new phone system.

Response

This recommendation has been partially implemented. The EDD acknowledges the value in obtaining detailed information to evaluate the effectiveness of its self-service efforts. Accordingly, EDD will utilize the UI Self-Service Options Surveys as described in response to Recommendation No. 4 to obtain the information needed to determine what changes could be made to EDD's service delivery systems. This information will also assist EDD in identifying potential enhancements to the Interactive Voice Response System.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Not Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: Summer of 2016
  • Response Date: September 2015

Current Status of Recommendations

All Recommendations in 2015-041