Spring 2013      |      Stephen P. Sands, Registrar      |      Edmund G. Brown Jr., Governor


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CSLB Interactive Phone System Provides Answers, Supports
Call Center

Your first contact when calling CSLB's toll-free automated line is with its Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system, a comprehensive series of computerized options designed to answer your questions about applications, licenses, and general CSLB information.

Even though working with a computer is not everyone's first choice, the system was able to assist about 444,000 callers in 2012. That's about 37,000 calls per month and about three times the volume of CSLB's Licensing Information Center (LIC), or call center. LIC manages about 125,000 calls from contractors and consumers each year, about 30,000 calls per month.

The IVR system has been operating for about 10 years and has been consistently upgraded and refined. Without it, the volume of CSLB's incoming calls would be overwhelming and result in extremely long waiting times for callers.

During the first month of 2013, the most-asked question through IVR was on how to become a contractor or a common question about contracting. In January, almost 20,000 contractor-related calls were taken; the second most-asked question (12,600 calls) was about maintaining or changing a license, followed by inquiries about individual contractor licenses (10,500 calls).

The IVR system also can fax information to callers, make a request that is converted to an email for forms or applications, or direct a call to an LIC agent at CSLB's Sacramento headquarters or main Southern California office in Norwalk if their question is more detailed or is outside the realm of the IVR options.

Even though the IVR system cannot take the place of a "live" agent, it has proven valuable in providing hundreds of thousands of CSLB queries each year.


Best Time to Call CSLB's Licensing Information Center

CSLB's Licensing Information Center, or call center, is staffed Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m., except holidays. "Wait times" to speak with a representative vary, but the shortest wait times tend to be on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., or 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

The longest wait times are on Monday and Tuesday mornings, or on the first day after a holiday. Wait times also can be a bit longer between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., and the end of the day, between 4:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. Other busy times are on rainy days and when there are "hot" issues that affect a lot of licensees.

When you call, be prepared to provide your license number and have a paper and pen ready to take notes. If the call center agent is unable to immediately answer your question, rest assured your name and call-back number will be taken and a follow-up call made once the topic has been researched.

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