Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register
SAYNOTO0870.COM

<---- Back to main website

 
Home Help Search Login Register

Pages: 1 2 
Send Topic Print
FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus (Read 53,362 times)
bbb_uk
Global Moderator
*****
Offline



Posts: 2,041
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #15 - Oct 29th, 2006 at 7:55pm
 
Hi trubster,

I'm unable to find the FoI in question so I can't post the email I sent them nor the email address although I do remember having problems getting it.  I had to ring the geographical number in the database for new claims and eventually had one of their c/s girls give me an email address which was local manager who forwarded it on.  The DWP website doesn't give a generic FoI email address out as its a vast organisation (its words) and you're directed to go to your local office and ask them.

Your FoI looks okay except I would add in that calls to 084x/087x can cost upto 40p/min from some mobiles.  For your information, in the next post is a copy of an email I sent to Inland revenue not so long ago (which you can use as a guide):-

......
Back to top
 
 
IP Logged
 
bbb_uk
Global Moderator
*****
Offline



Posts: 2,041
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #16 - Oct 29th, 2006 at 7:58pm
 
Quote:
To whomever it concerns,

I hereby request under the Freedom of Information Act the geographical termination number (those beginning with 01 or 02) that your Tax Credits Helpline, 0845 3003 900, points to.

Your contact number that you ask us to ring (0845 3003 900) is translated to one or more geographical numbers and I hereby request you provide me with this information under the above act.

I’m requesting this information because the cost of having to call your 0845 number from a landline ACTUALLY costs more than calling a local or national geographical call and in fact calling a 0845 from a payphone or mobile can cost upto 30/40ppm.  I therefore think that by using an 0845 contact number is not in anyway of benefit to us public, therefore it is in the public interest to have your underlying geographical number and in fact acts as a "cost barrier" due to the excessive costs of ringing an 0845 and therefore may stop the public from ringing you.

I also noticed that you do not mention the cost of calling your 0845 number and this is now misleading according ASA/CAP (Advertising Standards Authority) and OfCOM because you can no longer remain silent on the cost of calling an 0845 as it is no longer classed as a 'local' call.

Since over 2 years ago, BT removed the difference between local rate calls and national rate calls and they now cost the same.  For example, calling from London to Scotland costs the exact same amount as calling from London to Essex - and that is 3ppm daytime (5.5p for upto an hour at evening & weekends) but yet ringing a 0845 costs more.

Also, as you may or may not be aware that not all operators outside the UK will allow connection to a UK NGN (non-geographical number) beginning with 084x/087x.  Although it may be rare to receive calls from abroad it is possible that I (and other people) whilst on holiday abroad may have cause to ring you for which depending on the operator may be impossible.

Due to these access problems and cost of calls from some networks, the Home Office has announced that they will be releasing a geographical number to the general public instead of their current NGN and in the future the Casualty Bureau helpline (god forbit it should be needed again) will be a freephone number (free for most of the public) and a geographical number for those calling abroad and for those calling from payphones/mobiles.

Also, are you aware of the new revised edition of Central Office of Information guidelines and I quote the following paragraph from it:-

"(2) 0845 in particular has been known as ‘local rate’ – however with increased competition in the marketplace and resultant changes in tariff structures, these rates will often be in excess of normal local rates that citizens might be charged on their package. 0845 (and 0844) costs through phone boxes and some mobile tariffs can also be expensive to the citizen and this should also be considered."

For further information on the ASA’s decision that remaining silent on the cost of the call or advertising your 0845 number as ‘local’ rate is now classed as misleading and can be read here:-

http://www.cap.org.uk/cap/advice_online/ad_alerts/Advertising+0845+and+087+numbe...

and here:-

http://www.asa.org.uk/cap/news_events/news/2005/hanging+on+the+telephone+on+and+...

In brief, and taking into consideration my points above, here is the information I request:-

1.  What is the geographical number that your 0845 3003 900 points to (terminates at)?

2.  Does the 0845 3003 900 point to (terminate at) more than one geographical number?

2.1 If yes, then what other geographical numbers does the 0845 terminate at (including their area)?

3.  What was your reasons for the introduction of your 0845 number when it does not offer any benefit to us public (local rate and national rate no longer exist and calls actually cost the same) but an 0845 in most cases costs more (upto 30/40ppm depending on terminating network) and acts as a "cost barrier" as mentioned previously?

4.  Do you receive any revenue from the use of this number in anyway shape, or form (whether this is invested back in maintaining the call centre/switchboard or not)?

5.  Do you contribute in anyway to the use of this 0845 number? 5.1 If so, how much per minute?, and 5.2 What is the monthly/quarterly rental charge?

If you have any further queries/clarification then please don’t hesitate contact me.

As per the Freedom of Information Act (2000) guidelines I look forward to your response within 20 working days.
Remember this was for the Tax Credits helpline so use it purely as a guide and if you plan on using any part of, ensure its correct and relevant for the JobCentre Plus
Back to top
« Last Edit: Oct 29th, 2006 at 8:00pm by bbb_uk »  
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #17 - Oct 29th, 2006 at 10:39pm
 
Thanks very much, I will deliver the letter personally tomorrow... I will let you know when I hear anything back...

Cheers

Kev
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #18 - Nov 1st, 2006 at 1:25am
 
BBB_UK, I handed the letter to the jobcentre personally but they claimed not to know who is responsible and say the FOI does not cover them, I insisted that I saw a manager and p****d a few people off... but I eventually gave the letter to a manager who said he would file it as a complaint????

I would like to know if they are actually required by law to give me the phone numbers requested?

Thanks

Kev
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
bbb_uk
Global Moderator
*****
Offline



Posts: 2,041
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #19 - Nov 1st, 2006 at 10:31am
 
trubster wrote on Nov 1st, 2006 at 1:25am:
I handed the letter to the jobcentre personally but they claimed not to know who is responsible and say the FOI does not cover them, I insisted that I saw a manager and p****d a few people off... but I eventually gave the letter to a manager who said he would file it as a complaint????
It is true that the JobCentre wouldn't know which specific person dealt with an FOI of this nature and it also sounds like the manager is treating the FOI as a complaint and not an FOI.  I initially rung the number in the database for new claims and obtained the postal address of the manager for that area (Liverpool).  I then posted my FOI to this manager and received a reply stating it had been passed onto the relevant department.  I then received a postal reply from that relevant department.  Using this reply, I then rung them up and obtained an email address so that I could ask for an internal review via email rather than snail mail.  It's this email address I've lost but I still have the initial address of the manager to which I sent my FOI to (although it was forwarded on).  I'll PM you the address.


trubster wrote on Nov 1st, 2006 at 1:25am:
I would like to know if they are actually required by law to give me the phone numbers requested?
Normally yes but there are clauses they can use to get out of supplying that information.  Just read the various FOI to the BBC, etc (in this section) to see the excuses they use.  The excuse they used for my FOI is that they weren't aware of any number used that the 0845 pointed to as it was all done via BT's software.

I don't think you'll get very far to be honest as I said originally.
Back to top
« Last Edit: Nov 1st, 2006 at 10:35am by bbb_uk »  
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #20 - Nov 10th, 2006 at 1:26am
 
bbb_uk wrote on Nov 1st, 2006 at 10:31am:
I don't think you'll get very far to be honest as I said originally.


I am suprised, I have heared NOTHING!!! by law they have 20 days to respond or they are breaching the FOI act
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #21 - Nov 19th, 2006 at 1:26pm
 
Well... I dont think they are going to respond, I phones them on friday but they say they did not get any letters from me,

How do I take this further as they have breached the FoI act

Thanks

Kev
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
bbb_uk
Global Moderator
*****
Offline



Posts: 2,041
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #22 - Nov 19th, 2006 at 8:28pm
 
trubster wrote on Nov 19th, 2006 at 1:26pm:
Well... I dont think they are going to respond, I phones them on friday but they say they did not get any letters from me,

How do I take this further as they have breached the FoI act
You said yourself that when you took it in and spoke with a manager they'd file it as a complaint.  Therefore, as I mentioned in an earlier post, they could well have treated it as such and not an FOI.

You should send it to the address that I sent mine to (I PM'd a while ago) and ensure that the subject title of the letter clearly identifies it as being a Freedom of Information Request and maybe put in the first line that if this has been sent to the wrong person, could they forward it on to whichever person/department would deal with this type of FOI request.
Back to top
 
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #23 - Nov 22nd, 2006 at 9:25pm
 
I have been soo bored today and had too much free time on my hands, so I tried some random extention numbers on the JCP's Switchboard (0114 259 ****) I tried 0123 and 0120-0130 and i found the number for the new claims department and a few very important people!!! I got the extention number of "The Communications Manager, Contact Centre Directorate" and she was shocked I got out through to her mobile but promised to look into the FoI request seriously, and she was shocked no-one knew what do to with it and that she did not get it sooner!!!

I got a reply to the email within 30 mins,

Quote:
As requested , confirmation that I have received your email. I'll continue to investigate the issues raised, and try to establish what happened to the original request.

Yours faithfully

************
Contact Centre Directorate
Communication Manager
Level 2
Hartshead Square
Sheffield

07*** ******
0114 259 ****


Talk about right place right time Cheesy

Hopefully this will get looked into seriously

~Kev
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #24 - Nov 24th, 2006 at 9:50pm
 
Do you think this sounds promising or should I not bother???
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
FOI Request - Great Success :D
Reply #25 - Nov 25th, 2006 at 2:01pm
 
Just got a reply today and they have given me the numbers requested, they also say that last year they recieved £268'000 last year from the 0845 number!!! imagine if they had an 0871!!! lol

I will post it on here when I get some decent OCR Software

~Kev
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #26 - Nov 25th, 2006 at 3:08pm
 
Ok... here it is, Thanks to dave for OCR-ing it for me Cheesy

Quote:
Jobcentre Plus
PO Box 4047
Sheffield
S1 9DE
Telephone 0114 259 0000
www.jobcentrepJus.gov.uk
24 November 2006


Re: Request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000


Dear Mr ****

Thank you for your request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 of the 30th October. I am writing to confirm that I am now in a position to reply to your request.

However, in order to fully respond to your request it may help if I first explain the principles behind using a 0845 number and associated service. Firstly, they are used to provide a low cost call tariff and will in the main be cheaper than calling a national rate number. Using the 0845 prefix enables us as an organisation to provide better customer service by recording call statistics, providing a call queuing function, playing automated announcements providing customer information and allocating calls by requesting that customers choose various options.

Unfortunately, geographical number prefixes such as 0191, 0207 or 0114 do not have the same facilities and flexibility as the 0845 service. In addition, if Jobcentre Plus were to move back to utilising geographic numbers, our customers who call from mobiles or do not have bundled services packages will continue to be subject to tariff variations similar to the current 0845 service in operation today. Additionally to these limitations, advertising additional local numbers for the large number of Benefit Delivery Centres being implemented over the coming months will no doubt be confusing for customers, difficult to manage and the Department would be liable for the cost of re-routing large volumes of misplaced calls.

Benefit Delivery Centres have been designed to provide our customers with efficient, accurate and prompt payments in response to a claim for benefit. To this aim customer enquiries are routed to specialist teams so that staff processing benefit claims can concentrate on achieving these outcomes. As can be seen, a return to utilising direct dial geographical numbers would have a detrimental impact to the level of customer service that Jobcentre Plus is able to provide, without providing any call cost benefits to our customers.

It should also be emphasised that Jobcentre Plus and its parent Department are unable to influence the call charges implemented by mobile telephone network operators to 0800 and 0845 numbers as they are utilised by other organisations as well as Government Agencies, We are also unable to dictate whether a customer contacts Jobcentre Plus via a mobile telephone or from a landline, as this is down to individual freedom of choice.

Jobcentre Plus is committed to providing our customers with the highest standard of services available, and like you we appreciate that a significant proportion of our customers are some of the most vulnerable in society. Therefore the free phone '0800’ for Crisis Loan applications will continue to be available, supporting those in greatest need.

You will no doubt be aware of a recent OFCOM 'Numbering Review' consultation, which considers the introduction of a new ‘03' prefix in the UK dial plans. In effect, this service prohibits network operators from 'tariff sharing’ therefore if implemented this would deliver cheaper call tariffs to public bodies presently relying on 0845 numbers. The Department for Work and Pensions, and in particular Jobcentre Plus have been pro-active in the consultation, and would welcome a move towards this new number range.

The information you requested under the Act is as follows.

The geographical phone number for JSA changes is 0114 259 0505.

The geographical phone number for Income Support changes is 0114 259 0392.

It should be noted that these numbers are subject to change.

Across the Department as a whole, it received approximately £268,000 in the financial year 2005/2006. All of this was invested back into services. Further to this information you may be interested in the attached newspaper article.

Thank you for providing this feedback. We take your concerns seriously as we are continuously seeking to improve our customer service.

I trust that I have satisfactorily addressed the queries you raised however should you require anything further please do not hesitate to contact me again.

Yours sincerely

Mr A A Allwood

Sheffield Benefit Delivery Centre
Freedom of Information Officer


I cant believe how much they are getting by ripping off people having to claim benefits...
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #27 - Jan 5th, 2007 at 3:56am
 
Sorry, been away from pc for a while, I have spoken to the JCP and the numbers in the letters arent for the relevant departments, I spoken to Mr A Allwood and he insists there is nothing wrong with calling 0845 numbers local rate and he has told me he has passed this on to the national advertising team and he also says there is no such thing as a geo number to connect to the 0845 number...  Roll Eyes

Spent too much time on the matter and I have filed complaint with ICO... Will keep everyone posted. Smiley

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERY1
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
shadwell army
Newbie
*
Offline



Posts: 2
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #28 - Apr 10th, 2007 at 10:17pm
 
Just one item to add to this.  The original reply included With regards to the cost of the calls, to minimise costs to the customer, all telephone calls are charged at a local rate.  However customers using providers other than BT and mobile phone users are charged at their network provider’s normal tariff for 0845 calls.  Customer’s can also use “warm phones” in local Jobcentre Plus offices to make this call free of charge.

This is no longer true, since January JCP (Hastings branch, anyway) have not allowed use of their internal phones for job-search, including to their own  department.  You either have to make an appointment to see an advisor who will telephone on your behalf, or call their 0845 number, who then will, in most cases, give you another number to call about a specific job.

The reason given is because of 'customer abuse of the system', which I translate as 'our 0845 number was costing us too much when people were using our own phones to call it and as we are only interested in the profit that can be made from the line we only want people to use their phones to call us'.
Back to top
 
 
IP Logged
 
trubster
Full Member
***
Offline


10 Meg Broadband Rocks...

Posts: 147
Sheffield
Gender: male
Re: FOI Request - JobCentre Direct/Plus
Reply #29 - Apr 10th, 2007 at 10:21pm
 
In Sheffield, They let you ring the rip off 0845 line for people to complain about missing payments or arrange claims, or even to make an appointment to see someone IN THE OFFICE

They WONT let you ring the 0800 Crisis loans number that people with no money use to get a loan!!! They make you go to a payfone or tell you to call from a mobile and hold for hours!!!
Back to top
 

...
 
IP Logged
 
Pages: 1 2 
Send Topic Print
(Moderators: Forum Admin, Dave, bbb_uk, CJT-80, DaveM)

Website and Content © 1999-2019 SAYNOTO0870.COM. All Rights Reserved.
Written permission is required to duplicate any of the content within this site.

WARNING: This is an open forum, posts are NOT endorsed by SAYNOTO0870.COM,
please exercise due caution when acting on any info from here.


SAYNOTO0870.COM » Powered by YaBB 2.5.2!
YaBB Forum Software © 2000-2019. All Rights Reserved.


Valid RSS Valid XHTML Valid CSS Powered by Perl Source Forge