Waste, fraud and abuse. These may be the three most feared words in the public benefits sector, and as these three contagions go unchecked, they can even undermine the integrity of the program itself.
One government sponsored program, Lifeline, is no stranger to these problems. Lifeline, offered by eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs), provides telephone services to people of low income brackets. ETCs are often tasked with bringing Lifeline to a variety of consumers in multiple states, meaning they need to ensure they’re complying to strict state and federal standards.
And while the FCC Lifeline Reform has been issued, a process to stop the waste and mistreatment of public funds, ETCs are still faced with a multitude of challenges. Fortunately, there exists an immediate solution—outsourcing Lifeline administration to a third-party vendor.
As outlined in a recent white paper, here are some of the top obstacles facing ETCs and how outsourcing providers, like Solix, can help.
Challenge: Determining Lifeline eligibility Service providers have an impressive resume of service offerings, however, determining Lifeline eligibility is not typically one.
- Solution: The job of an ETC should be to manage the accounts of those who do qualify for services. Leave eligibility determination to an independent third-party provider who is well-trained and has access to the resources necessary to make such decisions.
Challenge: Completing Certification Procedures The initial and ongoing verification process for receiving Lifeline benefits is extremely comprehensive, not to mention complex.
- Solution: Outsourcing not only takes over the responsibility of sorting through applications, but it also provides access to innovative mobile applications that carriers can utilize for outreach on-the-go. Additionally, customers can have access to status updates, eligibility determinations and constant customer service, in real-time, which avoids unnecessary calls and long hold times.
Challenge: Managing Customer Data With a strict focus on compliance and regulations, successful customer data management is key.
- Solution: Automated verification processes, afforded by outsourcing providers, help carriers ensure that once customers are no longer eligible, they do not receive the benefit. With the ability to conduct statistical audits, files will be kept reportable and up-to-date. This will ensure that nobody is taking advantage of your program.
Challenge: Consumer Confusion Oftentimes the consumer is left with a lot of questions about his or her benefits.
- Solution: Don’t let communication get in the way of your customer relationships. Your customers can access customer service agents who can help answer any questions that they have regarding the status of their eligibility.