Callers to the Pasco County Tax Collector's Office might notice they're getting faster service, thanks to a new phone system and call center with five staffers.
Previously, one staffer at a Dade City switchboard handled all incoming calls, transferring them to the appropriate department for answers.
Now callers are able to get some information directly from the call center staff, which is based in the Gulf Harbors office.
"The five employees have extensive front-line customer service experience as well as a varied background, which makes them uniquely qualified to provide the best customer service possible," said Greg Giordano, director of customer relations. He said Tax Collector Mike Fasano had envisioned a system when multiple calls could be handled at once. One of the staffers speaks fluent Spanish.
All incoming calls are routed through the call center from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. A recorded information line is available at other times.
"The sole goal of the call center is to make the customer's experience with the tax office as easy as possible." Giordano said.
Requests for duplicate tax bills, lien holder information, publicly available drivers license information, vehicle registration requirements and drivers license renewal details are examples of services that will be provided through the call center. The call center also will have the ability to transfer callers directly to individuals who may possess the knowledge or expertise, whether within the agency of without, as needed. All call center employees have an extensive directory of governmental agencies and other outside groups, Giordano said.
Not all transactions can be handled by phone. Some services, such as drivers license renewals, require a personal visit by the customer to one of the offices. Federal law requires that certain documents must be inspected to verify the identity of an individual.
Also, the call center will not be equipped to conduct monetary transactions.