V.A. should set goals and keep records on three aspects of all phone calls.
First V.A. should record the number of calls and amount of time the caller is spending on the phone trying to get help.
Second track the amount of time the caller is kept on hold. This should be seperate from the total phone time mentioned above.
Third keep track of the number of calls where the caller is hung up on after being told to call back at a less busy time.
Once you know what your numbers are you can begin to set measurable goals for improvement.
Some suggestions to improve customer services would quickly become visable. I'll list a few.
1. Delete the menue options that refer the customer to the web or other phone numbers. The total phone time should start from the time the v.a. answers the phone that way the stupid references to the web and other phone numbers will be against their time. If we wanted to use the web we would have used the web. We can find the va home page using any search engine we don't need the phone system refering us to the web or to other phone numbers. These references are a waste of your customers time and you should care.
2. Offer a menue button to go straight to a real person right on the main menue. If the caller doesn't need any of the services offered on the menue but requires personal attention there should be an option on the main menue to go straight to a real person.
3. Add a feature to your phone services which allows the caller to leave a message if he has suggestions for improvement.
4. Add a call back button to your menue so the v.a. can spend their time dialing the phone instead of the veterans having to make multiple calls hoping to reach someone and being hung up on time after time because they are too busy.
At least let me vent my flustrations about being hung up on and leave my number so I'm in line for a return call sometime.