Department of Human Services — improving service delivery and reducing red tape

This measure will improve the services the department delivers and will reduce red tape.

Information update: Part of this measure is subject to the passage of legislation.
 

Centrelink call centre enhancements

Information update: This is not subject to the passage of legislation.

Description of the measure

This measure will make it easier for Australians to access Centrelink services.

The Government has announced it will provide funding to enable the department to pilot opportunities to increase Centrelink call centre capacity by an additional 250 full-time equivalent roles.

The additional operators will answer less complex enquiries about Centrelink payments and services. This will assist in reducing call wait times, including during peak periods and following emergencies and natural disasters, while also enabling our highly trained staff to focus on more complex work.

The additional operators will be engaged through an existing accredited Australian-based provider of telephony services to the Australian Government.

The details of the work to be undertaken by the operators will be determined through the piloting process and may include calls relating to less complex Centrelink work involving online services, helpdesk functions, reporting requirements and responses to emergencies and natural disasters.

Particular attention will be given to ensuring the operators are carefully selected and trained. All operators will need to fully comply with Commonwealth privacy and security requirements. No services or data will go offshore. The department will work closely with the Privacy Commissioner on the implementation of the initiative.

The operators will not deliver Medicare or Child Support services.

The Department will immediately commence consultation with staff and their representatives on the implementation of the measure.

Questions and answers

Whom does this measure affect?

The additional operators will assist Australians accessing Centrelink services.

What date will this measure start and finish?

The piloting of the services is to commence in 2017-18.

Streamline prosecution referrals

Information update: This is subject to the passage of legislation.

Description of the measure

This part of the measure creates a streamlined way of obtaining records from third parties such as banks. Prosecutors often need this information to prove social welfare fraud.

This measure proposes changes to social security law. This will help the Government efficiently investigate and prosecute deliberate non-compliance or welfare fraud.

These changes will make processes quicker and easier. They will also reduce administrative burden on third parties.

Questions and answers

Whom does this measure affect?

This part of the measure affects third party organisations such as banks.

What date will this measure start and finish?

This measure will start on 1 January 2018 and is ongoing.

Streamlining Tax File Number collection

Information update: This is subject to the passage of legislation.

Description of Measure

This part of the measure requires people to provide their Tax File Number (TFN) and relevant third party TFNs at the time of claim. This removes the current 28 day grace period for providing TFNs.

This means claimants provide the information needed to submit their claim in one transaction. This will make current processes quicker and easier.

Questions and answers

Whom does this measure affect?

This part of the measure will affect people who claim income support payments which require a TFN as part of the claim process.

What date will this measure start and finish?

The part of the measure will start on 1 January 2018 and is ongoing.

Page last updated: 15 May 2017

This information was printed Thursday 25 May 2017 from humanservices.gov.au/corporate/budget/budget-2017-18/improving-services/department-human-services-improving-service-delivery-and-reducing-red-tape It may not include all of the relevant information on this topic. Please consider any relevant site notices at humanservices.gov.au/siteinformation when using this material.