New Customer Service Centre launches in Newtown

By on 12/01/2010 in News


Plans to bring citizens even greater access to Birmingham City Council will reach a major milestone when the city's first Customer Service Centre (CSC) opens in Newtown on Thursday (January 14).

The state-of-the-art CSC was previously a Neighbourhood Office and has been developed as part of the Customer First Business Transformation Programme - seeking to revolutionise the quality of council services offered to Birmingham's citizens in partnership with Service Birmingham.

As well as looking and feeling radically different to the old Neighbourhood Office, the new CSC's public floor space will be three times bigger than it was, consolidating services currently offered at the existing Newtown and Birchfield offices. In parallel to the new facility, a part-time pre-booked appointment service will continue to be offered from the Birchfield site.

The council has worked closely with customers and staff to shape the proposals which see face-to-face interaction continue to be a cornerstone of the services that are offered at the site.

These traditional methods of dealing with queries are complemented by simple access to a range of other communications channels such as self-service kiosks, internet-enabled PCs and free public access telephones that will allow users to call the council Contact Centre.

The centre is part of a wider plan that is set to ultimately see a network of 13 CSC's and nine part-time Neighbourhood Offices used to deliver front-line services to citizens. One of the key aims is to resolve as many queries as possible at the first point of contact, and to prevent people having to make unnecessary visits to council buildings.

Cllr Paul Tilsley, Deputy Leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “The old Neighbourhood Offices have been a popular resource for many years, but in their current format they are no longer fit for purpose.

“By embracing modern technology we are developing a network of Customer Service Centres and other communications methods such as our revamped website and a single telephone number that will better cater for the needs of our citizens.

“We are determined to improve levels of customer satisfaction through our Business Transformation programme and I believe that the opening of our first Customer Service Centre is an important landmark on that journey.”


Notes to editors

1. Business Transformation is Birmingham City Council's ambitious nine-strand programme which aims to modernise and enhance services delivered across the whole authority to citizens. It is projected that the programme will realise benefits of around £1billion over the ten years to 2016.

2. Service Birmingham is a strategic partnership between Birmingham City Council and Capita which will support a transformation in the way the council works; improving services and contributing to its efficiency agenda. This strategic partnership forms part of the council’s objective to find better and more innovative ways of delivering services for the benefit of employees and citizens. The principle of this joint venture focuses on the provision of cost effective, sector leading, ICT services and in supporting the council in achieving its business transformation objectives.

3. Customer First is one of nine programmes which make up Birmingham City Council's ambitious Business Transformation programme, and will help deliver a range of improvements giving residents world-class standards of customer service. As part of the wider package, Customer First will provide simpler and easier ways of accessing council services, a single '0121' telephone number to access all council services, and a brand new user-friendly city council web site personalised for customers. First-time resolution for 80 per cent of enquiries and an increase in customer satisfaction from 59 to 85 per cent are key drivers behind the programme.

4. A factsheet containing background details on the council’s need to change customer service delivery can be found here, while a picture gallery can be found here.


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There Are 2 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Paul Mohr says:

    Nice article on new CSC but Paul Tilsley video is not working.

  2. KrisK says:

    Paul: Many thanks for the feedback – is good to know our work is welcomed.

    Like yourself, we too often find that we can’t play the videos either, and this is due to the ‘capacity’ provided by Service Birmingham.