Customer First!

The North East echoes my initial findings! A new report written by Aperia, who did the work with Chorley/NWEGG on citizen need, has been produced on behalf of the Customer First Network of the North East England local authority customer service managers under the auspices of the North East Improvement & Efficiency Programme. It examines NI14 and contact management, with some sound advice!

Amongst the quotations I savour are:

regarding NI14 – “our view is that this figure is, in fact, of little value (but the Minister wanted one!)” – page 10

Page 11 – “Additionally, there are indications that it is important for public sector contact centre staff to increase their ratio of time spent with the customer as a percentage of time worked. There is emerging thinking that demonstrates that private sector call centre staff spend something approaching 40% of their working time with the customer whereas public sector equivalents spend less than 20% of their time with the customer. To drive these improvements it will be critical for contact centres to be recording a recognised measure of productivity – and what is more a measure that will have to be accepted by employees as an indicator that they can directly affect.”

Page 11 – “Attempts to address uniformity of customer satisfaction indices have been tried and failed on many occasions.”

Page 12 – “Potential measures for quality include:-

Overall Satisfaction – percentage of surveyed customer respondents expressing overall satisfaction with the services received to determine the percentage of customers who are satisfied overall with services provided by the organisation

Engagement with the improvement process – percentage of customers (broken down by customer type) identifying ways to improve service delivery to determine the level of customer engagement with service improvement.”

Page 13 – “Corporate systems should be in place to help measure customer satisfaction – the key quality criteria for any customer focused organisation. These should be multi-channel and configured in accordance with the available common languages (controlled lists) that describe local government services.

Page 14 – “Measuring usage of public services across all primary channels for that service is critical.”

Page 15 – “There are no council’s (who responded) who have a fully holistic approach to managing access channels for local services. Customer Services as organisational units tend to be limited to telephone and face to face contact with little, if any, control over the web and white post channels or other lower volume channels. Corporate responsibility for face-to-face remains isolated to one-stop-shops, rather than more broadly applied to all face to face interaction.”

All-in all a useful document!

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