United Way 211 Expands Call Center Capacity During Tax Season

The Challenge

Reduce the stress of tax season by provide accessible resources and mental health support to American filing taxes

The Result

Guided 5,733+ people through tax season

Qualified 2,959 people for tax savings up to $2,982 in CalEITC and/or $1,000 in Young Child Tax credits

Facilitated the claiming of $8,823,738 in total eligible tax credits

Tax season can be a stressful time of year and is overwhelming for many. In an effort to make filing taxes easier, X2 AI has partnered with United Way 211 to develop a tax support program using Tess, a self-serve chatbot. Tess is available in both English and Spanish and offers a step-by-step introduction to paying taxes, access to tax organizers and income calculators, and a survey to determine eligibility for tax credit or refunds.

The program was implemented in 2019 and is available year-round. Since then, over 5,733 people have participated and spent over 97,000 hours chatting with Tess about tax preparation. After completing a brief eligibility survey delivered at the start of the program, 52% of participants learned that they qualified for up to $2,982 in CalEITC credit or $1,000 in Young Child Tax Credits.

Through a traditional call-center approach, this level of support would have cost over $6,315,000 in staffing expenses and support for call center employees. Through the implementation of Tess, United Way 211 is able to service more people and free up call center bandwidth by ensuring timely and reliable communication with chatters. 

At the end of each conversation, Tess gauges the helpfulness of each interaction to optimize the program’s impact. When asked about the benefits of using the program, chatters said they felt more relaxed and felt that they could trust Tess. Other chatters were appreciative of the resources provided and left with a better insight into what they believed to be a complicated filing process. In addition to tax support, Tess offers psychological interventions to provide mental health support, such as tools for coping with difficulties and practicing self awareness.

Through this partnership with United Way, X2 AI was able to relieve the stress of tax season by providing resources and mental health support to thousands of people across the United States.

X2 AI creates custom white-labeled coaching and mental health support chatbots. Solutions are provided in collaboration with large employers, nonprofits, insurance companies, and universities. 

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