Currently, Pennsylvania’s unemployment compensation programs run on an outdated 40-year-old system. Technology has changed so much in 40 years – we’ve moved from rotary phones to cell phones, VHS to streaming video, 8-track tapes to unlimited music on our phones. It’s time we update our unemployment system, too!
Changes in technology over the past 40 years will make the new system faster and easier to use for everyone. For users, this means more self-serve features, such as a messaging center that allows staff to communicate with an individual user.
UC staff and vendor Geographic Solutions Inc. (GSI) have worked hard on building this new system, and we’re excited to finally be unveiling it. We know it will make an enormous improvement to the process of filing for unemployment in Pennsylvania.
The transition to the new unemployment system is expected to occur on June 8, 2021.
Programs that will transition to the new system are:
- Unemployment Compensation (UC);
- Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC);
- Extended Benefits (EB);
- Shared Work or Short-Time Compensation (STC); and
- Trade Readjustment Allowances (TRA).
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) is on a seperate system and will not be affected by the transition.
The new system will make the process of filing for unemployment easier and faster, allowing out-of-work Pennsylvanians to focus their attention on finding a new job.
After the new system is launched, users will notice a greatly improved “look and feel” to the website. Unlike the clunky website currently in place, the new system will look and function more like other websites that Pennsylvanians use every day. This makes it more intuitive when certifying weekly claims, filing new claims, accessing claims information, filing an appeal, checking a payment status, and more.
The new system will work on mobile devices, like tablets and phones. It will also provide access to more of the user’s personal information and details about their claims, as well as a messaging center to receive important communication from L&I staff.
The new system will give employers more self-service options for managing their benefit information. While the old system mails notices of separations, appeal hearing dates, and UC correspondence, the new system will allow employers to view this information in real time. This will provide greater oversight, faster response time, and better communication regarding changes in an employer’s information.
We want everyone to feel comfortable using the new unemployment system. While most Pennsylvanians will intuitively understand how to use the new system, we will also be conducting extensive outreach and providing a variety of training materials and other helpful information. This includes a series of live workshops for the public and groups that work with unemployed individuals.
We encourage anyone who wants to learn how to use the new system to watch our social media channels and website for announcements about the workshops and join our UC experts before the transition occurs in June.
Right now, users do not need to take any action. However, we do encourage everyone to take a look at the user guides for the new unemployment system and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn for future updates.