Hartlepool Borough Council is set to make some changes to its telephone system.
The changes are aimed at improving the level of service to customers.
From today, the council is urging callers to dial a direct number which will enable them to get straight through and speak to the right person.
Every year, the council’s switchboard receives more than 150,000 telephone calls, but about half of these relate to five key services.
The services and numbers to ring are as follows:
Housing Benefits – 01429 284188
Council Tax – 01429 284277
Refuse Collection and Recycling – 01429 523333
Child & Adults First Contact Support – 01429 284284
Housing Services – 01429 523336
The new system will also see the council introducing an automated system for its main switchboard number (01429 266522) which will link callers to the five top services plus other services.
Andrew Atkin, the council’s assistant chief executive, said that the changes are part of the ongoing process to improve services for customers.
He said: “The council is constantly looking at ways to improve services and the telephone system is a key part of this.
“If we can encourage people to ring our direct numbers, it will mean that they are able to speak to someone much quicker.”