One of the most common kinds of phone calls we receive from caseworkers is the one that starts out, “My client says her PIN number doesn’t work.” Sound familiar? So why wouldn’t a PIN number work? There are a number of possible answers. Let’s take a look at some of them:
- Wrong PIN number. Probably the main reason a client can’t get through is because either they wrote the wrong PIN number down, or they dialed the number incorrectly. Clients should always try the number a second time if they haven’t been able to get through on their first try. If that doesn’t help, double check with us. We can always fix the problem.
- Program not yet started. On occasion, a client will receive her pink card before her call-in program is scheduled to start. The system will not recognize her until that start date. Make sure her call-in did not happen before she was scheduled to start.
- Program ended. When a client is registered into CMOST, both a start date and a stop date are posted. When the stop date is approaching, CMOST automatically sends out an email to the listed caseworker, asking whether or not an extension is required. Unless we hear back, the case is closed in CMOST.
- Called from cell phone. Sometimes calls from cell phones won’t go through if the connection is bad. Other times, the keys don’t engage. Tell your client to make sure he is calling from a place where his phone is known to pick up and receive signals. Also, instruct him to press the buttons slowly, and watch to make sure they register when he presses them.
- Call doesn’t go through. During periods of exceptionally heavy phone traffic, your client’s call may not go through on the first try or she may get a busy signal. Always let them know to call a second time, and even a third time if necessary.
- And then there are clients who are, perhaps, being less than truthful. But we will take a look at all other possibilities before reluctantly coming to that conclusion.
So now you know the kinds of problems that can sometimes cause you to hear a report about your clients PIN number not working. But what can you do about it? We suggest that you first make sure your client wrote down the correct PIN number. Second, make sure he’s on or past his start date, and hasn’t passsed his end date. Have him try to call a second time. If he’s using a cell phone, tell him to make sure he’s in a place where he can send and receive messages, and make sure he watches to see if the keys register when he pushes them. If your client still can’t get through, by all means, let us know. We’ll look into it, and if something needs fixing, we’ll get it fixed.