Customer Service Update
March 14, 2022
The last two years have been a challenging time for all our members, including the dedicated staff here at OCERS. Throughout the two-year pandemic, our team has continued to serve members via the myOCERS member portal, over the phone, as well as using tools such as the website, online seminars, email and traditional mail.
Even as the nation slowly returns to normal, OCERS’ staff has been faced by another challenge – a record-setting number of retirements.
“We’re experiencing a higher volume of retirements than in many years,” said Jeff Lamberson, Director of Member Services. “As of March 14, 2022, we have already received and are processing 576 retirement applications.”
Mr. Lamberson said the team at OCERS wants to thank members and employers for their patience during this critical time. Although the number of retirements typically increases in the early months of any year, factors such as a 3 percent Cost-of-Living Adjustment for those members who have a benefit effective date on or before April 1, 2022 appear to be helping drive the higher-than-normal numbers this year.
“2019 and 2020 were record breaking years, and this year is above both those years. It’s been heavy since the beginning of the year,” Mr. Lamberson said.
“We are doing everything we can to ensure timely processing of applications for retirement. OCERS’ staff have never met a challenge we cannot handle! We are thinking on our feet and processing as quickly as we can. We have also been working on bringing on new team members to assist with supporting our members.”
Please note that OCERS’ staff is doing its best to respond to each and every member call and email as quickly as possible.