The Department of Workforce Services (DWS) is contracting with 30 additional call center agents in order to reduce the hold times and process the unprecedented number of Unemployment Insurance claims the agency has been receiving. The phone number to reach the new call center is 888-674-7699. Claimants may call the toll-free number to file a claim or ask questions about unemployment insurance. "With the contract with TTEC, we are nearly doubling the staff available for answering calls to the Unemployment Insurance division," said DWS Workforce Programs Administrator Holly McKamey Simoni. "Callers can now use the toll-free number, 888-674-7699, and TTEC has allowed us to expand our hours of operation to 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. This will greatly reduce the time callers have to spend on hold, and those who have questions will be able to get them answered more quickly." The TTEC agents are able to answer most of the UI questions callers may have. More complex questions may still need to be answered by DWS UI representatives, and TTEC will be able to forward those questions to the appropriate personnel. "Having call center agents available to answer the most common questions will free up our UI staff to handle the more technical ones," McKamey Simoni said. "Callers who are transferred to a UI staff member may have to leave a message, but our staff will be able to respond to messages more quickly than we've been able to do since this pandemic began." Claimants filing by phone will still be asked to respect the alphabetical division of days for filing claims, though the call center offers extended hours. The call center opens at 7 a.m. and closes at 7 p.m. Those whose last names begin with the letters A-M may file Monday, Wednesday or before 1 p.m. on Friday; those whose last names begin with the letters N-Z may file Tuesday, Thursday, or after 1 p.m. on Friday. The change to the 1 p.m. switch on Fridays was made to allow callers in both alphabetical groups six hours to call. Claims may still be made any day of the week, regardless of last name, at WYUI.wyo.gov. The UI Call Center numbers can still be reached at 307-473-3789 or 866-729-7799, as well. For more information, including Frequently Asked Questions, please visit wyomingworkforce.org/covid19-resources/.