Service address / mailing address

Capturing addresses is an important design consideration for Lifeline because the consumer base moves frequently, and can live in areas with non-standard addresses. During interviews, stakeholders shared their experiences with entering Lifeline consumers’ addresses, and the consumers’ diverse needs for entering where they live.

Descriptive home addresses

Rural and Tribal customers need the flexibility to add a descriptive address or coordinates, rather than a standard address.

We don’t anticipate that customers will be allowed to enter a PO Box as their home address. However, as they do now, customers can use a PO box as their mailing address. Continue reading “Service address / mailing address”

Identity checking: DOB and SSN

In this post, we’ll continue sharing the feedback we’ve heard about challenges and opportunities with the identity checking (TPIV) process for the National Verifier.

Date of birth

Entering the customer’s date of birth does not appear to have the same level of challenges as entering their name. As such, we haven’t received a lot of feedback about DOB!

One piece of advice we heard is to specifically label which fields are for day, month, and year, because some cultures enter the day first and the month second, rather than the U.S. standard of entering the month first. Continue reading “Identity checking: DOB and SSN”

Identity checking: names

Talking to stakeholders helped us identify pain points and opportunities to improve the identity checking (TPIV) process, which is part of the eligibility check the National Verifier will perform.

We learned that even when gathering something as simple as a name, extra guidance and flexibility can help increase success.

Customers need more than “first name” and “last name”

We heard about the need for extra name flexibility in the name fields. In particular, we heard that it’s important to include fields for middle names, suffixes, and multiple last names. We also heard that a low character minimum is important, as some customers have names with only 1 or 2 letters. Continue reading “Identity checking: names”

Customer experience: the full picture

While speaking with Lifeline stakeholders, we also heard that Lifeline is only a piece of a customer’s overall experience, which USAC should keep in mind while designing the National Verifier.

Customers depend on their service provider for many aspects of their phone/broadband service – their device, billing, service interruptions, plan and address changes – and their Lifeline discount. Customers are accustomed to communicating with their company about all of these issues. Continue reading “Customer experience: the full picture”

The importance of “real-time”

When the National Verifier is available, many customers will check their eligibility at the same time as enrollment. For sign-ups in retail locations and live phone interactions, service providers stressed that “near real-time” eligibility determinations are extremely important to them.

We heard that if the eligibility review takes too long, the customer will walk away or hang up, and it’s very difficult to get them to return and finish the enrollment process. Continue reading “The importance of “real-time””