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News > Commentary - Finance customer service changes
386th AEW finance office
SOUTHWEST ASIA -- Master Sgt. Shemethia Strange, 386th FM superintendant and paying agent, helps a customer at the finance window. Sergeant Strange, along with members of the finance office for budgeting, accounting, customer service, cashier and disbursing operations to make sure money is spent wisely and correctly. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Shaun Emery)
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Finance customer service changes

Posted 12/16/2010   Updated 12/17/2010 Email story   Print story


Commentary by Lt. Col. Mark Snow
673d Comptroller Squadron commander

12/16/2010 - JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- Three months ago, I made the decision to change the 673d Comptroller Squadron's customer service walk-in hours. I reduced the hours the door was opened 2.5 hours a day.

The biggest reason was to help you.

It was taking 60-65 hours a week to help customers and to process all the documentation we received in the week.

It was not working.

Although we worked the longer hours and tried to get caught up, it was still taking us over two weeks to process your documentation; and I'm not talking about the items sent to the Air Force Financial Service Center at Ellsworth Air Force Base, these were the transactions that we handled here locally.

Once the hours changed, our processing times improved and we eliminated 75 percent of the time needed to try and get caught up. We have found, processing delays were almost eliminated.

However, it did not help those customers who needed to talk to someone when they had a complex pay issue.

You spoke and we listened.

We are making improvements to our customer service lobby, increasing our hours, and have implemented eFinance and other tools locally to accomplish our number one mission - servicing you, the customer.

In the last few weeks of December, we are redesigning our customer service lobby layout to facilitate a smoother flow and enhance the service provided.

Customer service representatives will be in close proximity to our self-service computer lab to assist personnel with their eFinance transactions.

We are also changing our hours.We are shifting our walk-in hours to 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Monday thru Friday.

We are also opening up appointment times from 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday to allow more time for those customers with complex pay issues.

We have not forgotten about shift workers. We will extend appointment hours on Wednesdays until 6 p.m., to assist customers who work shifts. We will work with them, on a case-by-case basis, to assist if they cannot make it during our normal posted hours.

Please send email to our Customer Service inbox at to schedule an appointment.

You can also submit questions to this email and we will respond within 48 hours.
Finally, we have implemented eFinance to assist you in accomplishing several transactions at your duty location.

Items that may be filed through eFinance include state of legal residence, COLA, family separation allowance, advance pay, allotments, BAS, BAH, TDY vouchers, and Partial Settlement Vouchers (similar to accrual vouchers).

Some of these transactions may still require you to print and submit further documentation to finance; however, to save customers time and a trip to our office, most documents can be scanned in and emailed to

12/17/2010 1:17:51 PM ET
Thank you for changing the hours it was ridiculous to me that the JBER finance office customer service reps couldn't be gone for more than one medicaleducationaletc appointment per week unless under special circumstances and sometimes didn't even have time for lunches and could work 11 hour days 5 days a week. And the fact that they worked consistently on Saturdays for 5-6 weeks during this past summer was certainly disheartening. Not only did the morale of the finance office airmen decrease but also the customer service quality decreased. How well could someone serve you after working a 50-65 hour work week having no time to spend with family or have their own health andor well being checked out I understand a big issue is the manning but changing the hours certainly does seem to help with morale and customer service quality. At least in my opinion it helps much more than being closed on Friday afternoons for mandatory fun lunches out with coworkers to be followed by comin
Concerned for Finance, JBER
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