Why the customer must come first

By on 05/08/2009 in Blog

tilsley-paul-2004Deputy Leader Cllr Paul Tilsley explains how Birmingham City Council is looking to take a lead in customer service.

It is no coincidence that our Business Transformation programme which is designed to revolutionise customer services is called Customer First.

Our aims and intention are very clear - by working in partnership with Service Birmingham, we want to be recognised as a national leader in terms of the customer service we provide and the levels of satisfaction that people have when contacting us.

During the upcoming year, citizens, business and visitors to Birmingham will notice a number of significant changes to the way the council serves them.

For instance, more than 500 members of our dedicated and loyal workforce have undergone training that will lead to Institute of Customer Service Awards.

We have also launched a new telephone booking system for appointments and started a programme to refurbish several neighbourhood offices along with the development of new Customer Service Centres that will offer a host of council services all under one roof - in some cases in partnership with other public agencies such as health.

But this just scratches the surface of what Customer First will deliver. Notably, our revamped official website www.birmingham.gov.uk - due to be launched later this month - will act as a gateway to the council's broad range of services.

Initially we will be putting in the framework of the new site that, over time, will house a number of exciting features as the platform develops.

Citizens will be able to track their enquiries thanks to new personal accounts, and take advantage of enhancements such as a better search facility based on Google technology and GIS mapping that will make it easier to locate council services than ever before.

And in the next year or so we will be introducing a single '0121' number for the council - replacing the 450 or so published numbers we currently have.

For citizens who don't have access to the council's internal telephone directory, I am sure that this will prove to be a very popular improvement!

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