Department of Revenue News Release
April 23, 2018Department of Revenue Reports on Initial Success of ‘Road to 100’ Initiative
The Missouri Department of Revenue is today reporting on the recent progress it has made in the areas of call center performance, refund tracking and refund issuance times. This update is part of the Department’s ongoing effort to be more transparent about how it is working to better serve customers. It also comes as the Department is celebrating the initial success of its “Road to 100” initiative, which is an important milestone of the Department’s overarching transformation process.
Unique to the Department, Road to 100 is a program developed by DOR leadership to ensure that 100 percent of calls received in the Department’s various call centers are answered and customers are getting the help they need.
“The Department’s Road to 100 initiative is a great example of what we’ve been able to accomplish by thinking creatively and working together,” said Department Director Joel Walters. “I’m truly impressed by the positive impact this program has already had on how the DOR functions, our culture and, most importantly, how well we’re able to serve the citizens of Missouri.”
For the last four months, the Department’s Taxation Division call agents have been compiling customer call topics in one central location in order to more easily track and react to customer questions and concerns. By analyzing the data, the Department has been able to tailor its website and social media messaging to make it easier for customers to find answers to the questions they are asking.
“It’s taken a tremendous amount of work, but we’ve been able to improve our percentage of calls answered from about 30 percent in March 2017 to about 90 percent in March 2018,” added Mark Godfrey, director of Taxation. “Looking at these numbers, it’s easy to see the very real progress that’s been made.”
In addition to more closely analyzing call center data, the Department also hired additional temporary staff to answer calls and launched a new application that allows customers to sign up to receive automatic text and email alerts each time the status of their state tax return is updated. As of Thursday, more than 37,800 people had already subscribed to the service.
Walters added, “Not only has our Taxation Division drastically improved its call center answer rate, our Driver License Bureau call center hit its goal of answering 100 percent of calls earlier this month, and we’ve also cut down the turnaround time for refunds by nearly half — meaning we’ve been getting refunds back into taxpayers’ hands more quickly.”
Specifically, the Department reports that from Jan. 1 to the week of April 8, the turnaround time for tax refunds has on average decreased from about 14 days to eight. Director Walters emphasized, however, that while the Department is very pleased with the improvements that have been made, the Department wants the public to understand that there are other factors, such as cash flow, that can influence the timing of refund payments and that the numbers may yet change between now and the time at which all refunds have been paid. He stressed that the Department will continue in its efforts to be fully transparent throughout the remaining refund payment process.
Walters concluded: “The main takeaway for our customers is that these successes aren’t isolated incidents. The Road to 100 isn’t coming to an end; we’ve only just started, and it really is an endless process of improving and maintaining our overall performance.
“We’re working day in and day out to transform the Department of Revenue from within to better serve Missouri taxpayers and put our citizens first. I am incredibly proud of all our dedicated employees and our outstanding leadership team. We look forward to sharing more good news with the people of Missouri soon.”
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