February 9, 2021
By Community Action Agency

New technology improves Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline operation and caller experience

JEFFERSON CITY, MO –The Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline has launched a new system, Genesys Cloud, to modernize and enhance its operations. The Hotline’s reliance on its original technology had become problematic, landline service disruptions caused sudden, unexpected outages, and the system had limited capacity to triage calls and streamline operations.

“Assuring the safety of children is paramount, and making our Hotline operation more reliable, easier, and faster to get caller information is a critical first step, said Jennifer Tidball, Acting Director, Department of Social Services. “In recent years, when the Hotline experienced landline service disruptions the wait for service reconnection was extremely stressful and disconcerting to callers and our staff who know what is at stake and is simply unacceptable. As a 24-7 operation, our move to a cloud based system with a 99.99% ‘uptime’ record ensures greater safety for Missouri children.”

In 2019, the Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline received approximately 135,000 calls and most are from mandated reporters who are required under Missouri law to make reports of suspected abuse or neglect. School personnel make up the majority of mandated reporters calls. They often call during the school day and that heavy call volume can result in long holds during those hours. Genesys Cloud enables the Hotline to call back a reporter who cannot hold, even if the caller has up to a four-digit extension.

Genesys Cloud allows the Hotline to be more efficient and better manage resources. Hotline staff can now view everything on one screen and the single log in enables them to navigate the system quickly to streamline their work and improve efficiency. The system also has enhanced workforce analytics so Hotline management can make better data driven decisions to ensure sufficient staffing during all hours.

The Department of Social Services urges every Missourian to be especially attentive to the safety and wellbeing of children during COVID-19 and strongly encourages anyone who suspects child abuse or neglect to call the toll-free hotline at 1-800-392-3738. The Missouri Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline responds is answered 24-hours a day, every day, all year round. Callers can report anonymously.

The mission of the Department of Social Services is to empower Missourians to live safe, healthy, and productive lives. Visit dss.mo.gov to learn more about the Department of Social Services and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.