Media Release by Senator the Hon Amanda Vanstone

Centrelink Wins National Call Centre Award

Centrelink has been recognised as one of Australia’s leading organisations, outdoing the toughest private sector competition in the nation to win the coveted Teleservices Centre of the Year, in the 50 staff or more category.

Centrelink Liverpool Call Centre was honoured by being named joint winner of the prestigious national award by leading industry body, the Australian Teleservices Association, at the 2002 National Awards Dinner on Friday night.

Amongst other things, the Liverpool Call Centre boasts an exceptional multilingual service with regular services in 22 languages and a callback service for many other languages. Centrelink Multilingual Call at Liverpool is unique in its service and commitment to multicultural Australia.

Teleservicing is an increasingly competitive industry, and I am delighted to see Centrelink win a field traditionally dominated by banks, insurance companies and utilities.

I especially want to thank the staff at the call centre for their hard work and dedication. This professionalism is reflected in a customer satisfaction rating of 91 per cent and climbing.

Centrelink is committed to serving Australians and this is especially true in times of stress and hardship. The Centrelink Bali Hotline is now providing assistance for victims of the Bali disaster and their families through a 24 hour a day service. The number is 13 6125 if you are calling from within Australia or FreeCALL 001 803 61 383 if you are calling from Indonesia.

With 6.4 million customers, and 140 different payments and services, answering Centrelink enquiries from across the country isn’t the easiest job in the world. This award recognises that Centrelink staff manage the task exceptionally well.

I want to congratulate the Liverpool Call Centre and also their colleagues from Western Australia who were national finalists for the awards, including Centrelink Bunbury Call Centre, Emily Martin (Teleprofessional of the Year) and Jan O’Halloran (Team Leader of the Year).

In total, Centrelink has 4,500 call centre staff in 27 centres receiving around 23 million phone calls each year. This makes Centrelink the largest single purpose networked call centre in Australia.