Croydon is investing in a new telephony system which will make it quicker and easier for residents to contact the council when they need to.
Croydon Council receives approximately one million calls every year, which are routed into the main contact centre, the revenues and benefits team, and other council services.
The council’s contract with Wavenet will reduce waiting times for callers and help to ensure they are directed quickly to the right council team to handle their query.
There have been ongoing issues with the council’s telephone system, which is over a decade old, resulting in residents not being able to get through, or their phone calls being cut-off.
The contract was signed in February and the council is aiming to launch the new telephony system in two phases. The first phase will be live in the middle of March to cover election queries, with a dedicated election number for residents to contact the council with any queries regarding the local and mayoral election in May.
The full roll-out of the new telephony system will be completed by the middle of June, bringing on-board other council services such as revenues and benefits, and waste collection.
“We’re investing in our telephone systems because we want residents to be able to get in touch with council officers, quickly and easily, whenever needed. Once rolled out, the new system will enable officers to make and receive telephone calls directly from council laptop computers.
“The council provides essential services to more than 386,000 people and while most prefer to contact us via email or our website, not everyone has digital access, particularly some of our most vulnerable residents. That’s why it’s vital that our telephone systems are fit for purpose.
“We know the technical issues we have been experiencing have been frustrating for residents and staff, and are working with our new provider to get the new upgraded system up and running as quickly as possible.”
Councillor Callton Young, cabinet member for resources and financial governance
Rob Stint, head of new business at Wavenet, said: “We have worked closely together to design and build a Mitel system that can support the council across its entire telephony estate, ensuring call handling capability and reliability.
“The passion of the team at Croydon has helped drive us all to achieve a truly transformational result, making contacting the council easier and quicker for everyone.”