The Georgia Department of Driver Services is requesting several enhancements for its FY09 budget. These enhancements include $557,337 to improve their work force, $284,180 for Web initiatives, $275,629 to enhance the call center, $7.9 million to implement Real ID and $1.1 million to replace the current Digitized Driver’s Licensing System for card production.
DDS has identified two potential services that can be offered through the Web to promote the core mission of providing services “faster, friendlier, and easier” to customers. These processes will reduce the amount of time customers spend processing transactions at the Customer Service Centers (CSCs), eliminate examiner down time and protect the integrity of the licensing program.
The first service DDS proposes for $196,450 will expand availability of online services to customers through the development of a Web Reservation System. This system will allow CDL road test applicants to schedule, change or cancel reservations online at their convenience. The agency hopes the initiative will also allow applicants to pay on-line, print reservation confirmations and receive email reminders of appointments.
Web-based testing oversight
The second service is a separate Web-based testing system that will provide for the automatic posting of test scores to a driver’s mainframe record, uniquely identify each test taker, and automatically prohibit applicants from taking the driving test twice on the same day. This system will cost $87,730 and will provide statistical analysis of pass/fail ratios and other testing related data to indicate areas needing more emphasis in education. It also will reduce fraud and error, as well as reduce customer wait times at CSCs.
Call center improvements
The Department has also requested $275,629 to enhance the call center. The agency has been selected by the Governor’s Office of Customer Service to transition its Contact Center to the new statewide Automated Call Distribution (ACD) in January. This is part of a long-range objective for all major call centers to use the new ACD to improve customer service. DDS currently runs the largest call center in the state that answers over 1.4 million calls annually. The system is operating at capacity and cannot be expanded without a significant upgrade.
Because of staff limitations and the inability to handle calls more efficiently, the abandoned call rate was 16.4 percent. With the proposed technology and additional features, DDS expects to increase the number of calls answered and reduce the abandoned call rate by 50 percent.
In addition, the call handling service level is expected to increase to 85 percent of all calls being answered in two minutes or less.
Real ID is here
DDS would like to implement Real ID for $7,971,253. The federal Real ID Act requires that all states modify their current practices to comply with federal requirements for increased security and integrity of state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards. Failure to comply with these standards will prevent Georgia citizens from using these state-issued IDs to board commercial aircraft, enter federal buildings or access nuclear power plants.
To comply with the provisions of Real ID, DDS is requesting to increase security requirements at its facilities, digitally capture and store document images, re-verify the identify of all existing Georgia license/ID card holders and issue compliant cards.
All current existing customers (as well as all new drivers or residents of the state) will have to visit a CSC in person from 01/2010 to 05/2013 in order to obtain a compliant license or ID card. DDS states that additional examiners and facilities will be needed to handle the increased volume and transaction times in order to prevent long lines at the centers.
Next week — A look at the requests from agencies within the Natural Resources Sub-Committee.
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