Eligibility Technician – North County (Greeley)

Job Details

Description
Responsible for reviewing new applications and recertification packets to determine initial and ongoing eligibility for public assistance programs. Communicate directly with client to obtain information and offer referrals and additional information relating to services and assistance provided within the department or the community. Manage all assigned cases using various data bases to update and evaluate documentation regarding current and historical household status and other relevant information to provide accurate case management.

Bilingual Spanish-English Preferred.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Other duties may be assigned. (any one position may not include all of the duties listed nor do the listed examples include all duties which may be found in positions of this class.)

• Gather information such as financial documentation and other supporting information from clients in person, over the phone and from electronic applications. Assist clients in understanding what information and documentation is needed, how it is obtained and how to complete required forms and applications. Advise clients of their rights, responsibilities and pertinent rules and regulations. Offer information and make referrals relating to additional services and assistance provided within the department or the community.

• Review new applications, recertifications and supporting documentation for completeness. Perform extensive research in multiple data bases to verify information and identify any inconsistent information. Determine initial eligibility, compliance and ongoing eligibility for public assistance programs using unique program guidelines and the information obtained from the client interview and any new information obtained from research.

• Complete required forms and enter all new and updated client information into several county and state computer programs and/or data bases. Update all required logs and reports. Process cases within State guidelines for timeliness. Submit case referrals to Investigations according to the programs’ rules and regulations when appropriate.

• Work closely with customers, helping them understand complicated program guidelines. Assist customers with appeals, hearings and discrimination processes if needed. Communicate with customers using a high level of customer service skill, returning calls and solving problems in a timely and effective manner.

• Work with Community Providers regarding changes or status of individual client cases when necessary. Develop relationships with Community Provides and educate them on program rules and regulations as needed.

Qualifications
Education:

High School Diploma or GED.

Preferred Education:

Associate’s Degree.

Required Work Experience:

• Three years full time business or clerical experience in an office environment.

• Extensive customer service, telephone use and computer experience that includes data entry and Windows based navigation.

Bilingual Spanish-English Preferred.

Additional Required skills, abilities and knowledge:

• Must possess ability to keyboard at 35 words per minute.

• Must possess accurate 10 key ability.

• Ability to use multiple data bases and computer programs.

• Must pass Human Services Background Checks.

Other Necessary Requirements
Ability to enter data into several different computer programs. Ability to learn and apply new computer skills on a regular basis. Knowledge of computer programs such as Microsoft Windows and Word, Excel, and Outlook.

Ability to read and comprehend instructions, correspondence and department policies and procedures. Ability to write correspondence.

Ability to effectively communicate in one-on-one and small group situations to customers, clients and other employees of the organization.

Ability to apply math concepts and calculations in the work environment.

Ability to apply common sense to problem solve in a work environment.

Ability to adapt to fast paced, high volume and ever changing work environment and be able to handle high stress situations.

Adhere to strict confidentiality guidelines and appropriate release of information.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit and talk or hear. The employee frequently is required to use hands to finger, handle, or feel; reach with hands and arms. The employee is occasionally required to stand and walk. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds. Specific vision abilities required for this job include close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, and ability to adjust focus.

ELIGIBILITY TECHNICIAN

Work Environment & Activities

The Eligibility Technician meets in person with individuals applying for public assistance programs at the North County location. Technicians will determine the eligibility of customers either in person or on the telephone – both are typically by appointment. The same types of interview questions are asked in recertification as those in a new application.

The technician will interview the applicant, asking questions that relate to eligibility requirements such as income, number of individuals residing in the applicants’ home and assets. Documents such as proof of identification, citizenship and income will be requested and verified by the technician. The technician will answer any questions that the applicant has regarding program rules and regulations, what documents are acceptable, timeframes for processing applications and explaining the responsibility of the applicant.

During conversations with customers, the technician may identify other areas of need and provide information on other services and programs available through the Department of Human Services or Community Partners. The technician will also assist a customer in understanding why an application was denied or not processed and help the customer to complete the required activity to finish the application or recertification process.

Approximately 40% of a technician’s workweek is customer contact related. The telephone recertification and application process and customer service activities comprise about 25% of the technician’s work week. These face to face interviews comprise about 15% of the technician’s work week.

Once the technician has finished an interview – either face to face or by telephone – they perform an extensive review of the application and supporting documentation received. They will search multiple data bases for additional information relating to the applicants history with Human Service and other public County, State and Federal records to verify accuracy of documents and information received. All information gathered is reviewed by the technician and evaluated using program guidelines to determine the eligibility of the customer for the public assistance program being applied for.

When eligibility has been determined, all information is entered into appropriate County and State programs and data bases. Speed and accuracy of entering the information is critical and requires a thorough understanding and comfort level with unique and complex computer systems. Multiple State and Federal standards must be met by Weld County Department of Human Services to maintain compliance with guidelines mandated by each program. The technician’s work is regularly reviewed by Case Reviewers to ensure individual technician compliance to established standards. A technician’s performance (speed and accuracy) determines their success and continued employment. Up to 85% of a technician’s work week is related to document evaluation, data entry and computer use, some of which is performed during the customer interview.

A SUCCESSFUL TECHNICIAN WILL EXCEL IN THEIR WORK ENVIRONMENT IF THEY POSSESS THE FOLLOWING ABILITIES AND TRAITS.

ORGANIZED WORK HABITS – The steps for processing an application are systematic and task oriented in nature. The more organized, structured and detail oriented a technician is, the more likely they will be able to meet processing quotas and the fewer errors they will make. The purpose of the Technician’s position is to gather information for processing an application or recertification, processing the application and determining why an application has been denied or benefits suspended. There is little room for creativity or deviation from the application process, but a strong level of problem solving ability is needed to assist the customer in determining why there is a delay or termination of benefits. A successful technician will be an independent and task oriented worker that thrives on accuracy and organization, but will be able to handle disruptions and deviations from routine that come with technology and a work environment that is comprised of a diverse workforce and customer base.

COMPUTER EXPERTISE – Individual program management systems and multiple data bases can be complicated and require navigation between multiple screens. The technician uses Microsoft Outlook both to communicate and to receive customer information. A thorough understanding of Outlook and a comfort with computer navigation in general will help the technician be more efficient with their time and efforts and result in a more natural work effort. Microsoft Word is used for customer correspondence. The use and preparation of spreadsheets in Microsoft Excel is a regular activity in the position.

GOOD JUDGMENT & PROBLEM SOLVING APTITUDE – The application for public assistance is standard, but the customer is anything but typical. Every applicant has a unique family or household makeup and a unique work and life history. They may have had several encounters with Human Service or it may be their first time filling out an application. The technician must be able to assist the applicant in understanding what information or documents are needed and ask questions in a way that will uncover potential problems or gather information that may be needed later on in the application process. The technician may have to dig for answers or needed information in a way that is both respectful and helpful. A technician must be confident and take responsibility for the work that they do, the way they gather and use the information they obtain and the outcome of their work based upon their good judgment and decision making ability. The technician must have integrity and keep in mind the confidential nature of the information that they receive from a customer.

CUSTOMER SERVICE ORIENTED – Families or individuals applying for public assistance are often in desperate need or crisis and have multiple barriers to independence in their lives. It is important for a technician to maintain a non-judgmental attitude and assist all applicants in a courteous and helpful way. A technician will have frequent interaction with other units and divisions within the Department which requires the ability to work in and support a team environment. A strong understanding of other programs and services provided by other divisions within the department provide an opportunity to provide proactive and preventative information to applicants.

Occasionally, customers may become agitated or angry with the technician or Department because of individual circumstances requiring a technician to remain calm and patient. Training on how to handle these types of situations is provided.