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Usability Nightmare in Big Government

epic-fail-reading-material-failSo I filed for unemployment the other day.  Unemployment is great because it is like free money the government has been garnishing from your wages for just this moment.  If you are never unemployed, you never get the chance to go get that money you deserve.

You can apply online and everything!  It was great….. or so I thought.

I get a notice a few days later saying I have to do a call with them because I received a severance package and am not unemployed.

I do the call and the first thing out of my mouth is, “I got a package, but I am pretty unemployed!”  Her response: Oh yeah, that is just what the form says.  This is merely a formality where we have to enter that you received a severance, per the notice the government received from AOL, into our system.  Oh, no problem, I think.  Although it is a bummer I could not have somehow entered that online.

Then at the end of the call, she drops the bombshell.  “Oh, you know you never actually completed the process, right?”  Nope.  “Oh, yeah, everyone who signs up online doesn’t click on the right things.  After it says you are done, you have to go back in and open a claim and then follow those instruction.  This happens to everyone.  Don’t worry about it.”

Wow, their online system works great if everyone who tries to sign up online fails.  Woowoo.

So the way to correct it, apparently, was to call this number.  I called the number ten times and it was busy every time.  But it did have a helpful message: “All lines are busy right now, press 3 if you would like to be called back when lines are available.  There may be an extra fee for this service.”  What am I supposed to do with that?

Anyway, after calling ten more times, I figure, “what the hell” and press 3 for my mystery fee.  Then I get the message, “This feature will not work because you are outside the calling area.”  Click.

Gotta love the government.

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