We are sorry about the long processing times

The first months of the year are busy times regarding unemployment security. In January–February the number of applications is at its highest, and many first-time applications are submitted. At the same time, new tax cards arrive, and our membership fee invoices are sent out.

To tackle the backlog we are giving priority to the processing of applications. We see to it that all possible employees are placed in the processing of applications. The number of messages and calls to the customer service is steered by providing comprehensive advice. That includes, for example, telephone information messages, highlights on the website, chatbot adjustments, and newsletters.

Despite the measures taken, the processing times are now longer than what we aim at. We are sorry about that. We think that you should receive your earnings-related daily allowance as quickly and flexibly as possible. The same also applies to the customer service.

The key challenge with unemployment security is that the processing of applications is still done manually. The information content of the Incomes Register is not as such sufficient for making decisions and, on the other hand, there is no such legislation in place yet that would enable automated decision-making.

In principle, the piling up of applications at the beginning of the year could be solved by hiring more staff. In practice it does not work, because familiarisation with work takes several months. After the peak early in the year, the situation stabilises, and there is no longer work for such a large number of staff. So the number of staff ideal at the beginning of the year is too high for the rest of the year, and that would increase the membership fee. So ultimately the first months of the year are a compromise between the processing times and the membership fee.

Although the challenge is difficult to solve, we have not given up. For example, we are continuously developing different solutions for busy times during which we can use people who have previously worked for us. In addition, we carry out long-term development to improve our tools. Our goal is to utilise information technology solutions as much as possible, in order to be able to respond more quickly to the fluctuation of the number of applications without increasing the administrative costs.

We want to thank all our members for the early weeks of the year and wish you sunny winter days!