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September 6, 2015 | by  | in News |
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0800 Oh my God just let me add to my debt

Most of our readers will be familiar with the dulcet tones of Dave Dobbyn or Zed songs playing over and over while you wait for a customer service rep TO JUST TELL YOU WHAT YOUR REALME LOGIN IS ALREADY. However, the interminably shit experience that is Studylink may have got a bit better.

After a three-year long collaboration the New Zealand Union of Students’ Association (NZUSA) has worked with the Government to improve call wait times, as well as online services.

StudyLink has reportedly reduced its number of unanswered calls by over 99 per cent, from 800,000 to less than 8,000; reduced application times by 30 minutes for up to 60,000 students; and introduced a digital delivery system for paperwork.

NZUSA President Rory McCourt said the association sought to ensure more loans and allowances were paid to students before Orientation.

“That’s the bottom line for us—that this service works like it should so that students can begin their courses without worrying about whether they’re going to be able to pay rent that week,” McCourt said.

Associate Social Development Minister Jo Goodhew has championed the improvements stating that “three years of collaboration between Studylink and the national student union has allowed us to respond to student feedback and the resulting improvements have made the online application experience a lot better”.

Various students have come forward saying that they view these changes as an improvement to an already good system, and look forward to improved dealings with Studylink in the future.

“I think it’s helpful,” says one student. “It reduces some of the anxiety for waiting for your loan to be approved, especially if you’re like me and prone to leaving things a bit late.”

Another student claimed that the problems Studylink faced in the past came predominantly from ill-prepared and irresponsible tertiary students, and that these improvements are not coming from a place of carelessness. “I think they do the best they possibly can considering the volume of use”.

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