Despite promises, the government is keeping you on hold with calls to Centrelink

Despite a report published by the National Audit Office in May 2015, Centrelink phone services are still being described as

Despite a report published by the National Audit Office in May 2015, Centrelink phone services are still being described as “unusable” for most people.

Labor claims the federal government has not kept its promises to improve Centrelink, despite the National Audit Office highlighting an appalling lack of customer service.

Senator Doug Cameron, Labor’s spokesman for Human Services, believes that Centrelink has never been so unreachable since moving its services online.

“(People) can’t get access to their account, then when they ring up the phone lines are jammed, they can’t get on the phones, when they go into a Centrelink office the lines are out the door”, Mr Cameron said.

Mr Cameron has criticised the Liberal government for purporting to be internet-savvy, through various advertising campaigns.

“To say that they are innovative, and yet they cannot deliver basic services through the technology… it’s just an absolute joke”, he said.

However the Human Services Minister, Stuart Robert, said that January is typically a busy month for Centrelink anyway.

With hold times over an hour in many cases, the Liberal MP blamed families returning to work and school for causing extra Centrelink backlogs.

Do you believe the federal government’s commitment to improving Centrelink is good enough? Have you been kept on hold, when trying to phone Centrelink?

  1. Bente  

    It a joke, we can’t get help over the phone and local offices don’t deal with pensioners, or so they said

  2. Marlene  

    Last time I needed to phone Centrelink I was on hold for 48 minutes and then dumped. What sort of service is that? No service! I attended Centrelink office the next day. Only took about 30 minutes and the staff were very helpful.

  3. one hour gees you were lucky sometimes four to five then hang up because finished for the day then they cut you of for not reporting on the day

  4. Ii would never bother to ring Centrelink. Complete waste of time. Quicker for me to drive in to town and go to their office. Fortunately, living in a small town waiting time is never very long and the staff are helpful and friendly. Feel sorry for those that don’t have this option.

  5. Jean  

    I have had endless problems with them. A few years ago they falsely accused us of owing them $13000. After four months of stress we won the case. Shortly after that our pension was reduced and when we made enquiries they admitted “a keying error” in recording our annual income incorrectly. I have to deal with them regularly as I still work casual part-time and my work pattern doesn’t fit their computer system so I have to keep getting them to switch me off and on the system for which I have to go into an office.

    They stopped our part pension while we were abroad regardless of the fact we had told them as we were supposed to. They put my 94 year old mother down as having power of attorney for me rather than the other way round and it all had to be redone.

    I have complained to everyone I can think of, from Senators to their own PR man but to no avail. No wonder they are officially the most complained about government service.

  6. lillian wallace  

    That is Ok for January excuse what about the rest of the year

  7. The service is very poor but I do feel very sorry for the staff as the demand must be overwhelming working in that environment.
    Of course the pAy won’t reflect the demand placed upon them, we all have only one pair of ears, eyes and hands, please.
    95% of the time they are respectful and helpful.
    This bunch of winners running the country don’t give a damn for the not so well off or the health effects it must make on public servants working in this area.

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