Isaac Davison

Isaac Davison is a NZ Herald political reporter.

Housing NZ hires more staff after closing offices

Housing Minister Phil Heatley has revealed that Housing NZ's closure of local offices has left its call centre swamped. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Housing Minister Phil Heatley has revealed that Housing NZ's closure of local offices has left its call centre swamped. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Housing New Zealand has made an about-turn and hired more staff after its closure of local offices left its call centre swamped by inquiries.

An overhaul of the state housing sector began last month and was expected to cut 70 jobs and replace some local offices with a national call centre.

Housing Minister Phil Heatley said in Parliament today that the overhaul had not been completely smooth, and the call centre would get more employees to deal with the high number of calls.

"The transition has not been without its challenges and that's why next Monday another dozen staff will be employed. The following week another group of staff... will be employed, and the following week another group of staff will be employed.''

He said it was still a good service which would improve with time.

Labour housing spokeswoman Annette King asked why tenants were waiting 25 minutes for their calls to the centre to be answered.

She said offices in Glen Innes and Onehunga had been overwhelmed with inquiries since other offices had been closed.

- APNZ

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_n4 at 16 Sep 2014 16:58:23 Processing Time: 509ms