Customer Consultation Slides Muriel Cleary 08


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  • Introduction Name – Department Put together 2 customer action plans, a national household customer survey and the Department’s First Charter. The environment in the Dept, customer focussed, positive and supportive from senior management. The Department makes payments to over 874,000 people each week and processes some 1.7 million claim transactions each year.
  • Customer Consultation Slides Muriel Cleary 08

    1. 1. Customer Consultation Lessons from the Department of Social and Family Affairs Muriel Cleary Thursday 27 th November 2008
    2. 2. Why consult with customers? <ul><li>Public Service Modernisation (SMI) </li></ul><ul><li>For more efficient and effective service </li></ul><ul><li>Public Expectations </li></ul><ul><li>Better rapport and understanding between customer and Departments/Offices. </li></ul>
    3. 3. Who to consult? <ul><li>Identify who the customers are ie someone who is either directly or indirectly, the recipient of the services provided. </li></ul><ul><li>External Customers eg customers receiving a service from the Dept, potential customers, PS/Voluntary/consumer organ. </li></ul><ul><li>Internal Customers eg Front line staff, service providers in the Dept. Partnership groups. </li></ul>
    4. 4. WHO TO CONSULT <ul><li>Customers/potential customers </li></ul><ul><li>Outside agencies </li></ul><ul><li>Private sector organisations/voluntary organ./local organisations/consumer groups </li></ul><ul><li>Representatives of groups experiencing poverty & social inclusion </li></ul><ul><li>Internal customers –front line staff/customer service /complaints officers/personnel resp for designing services or staff suggestion schemes. </li></ul>
    5. 5. Different forms of consultation <ul><li>Customer surveys </li></ul><ul><li>Customer panels </li></ul><ul><li>Focus Groups </li></ul><ul><li>Comments and Complaints System </li></ul><ul><li>Mystery Shopping </li></ul><ul><li>Invite submissions using online and off-line media </li></ul>
    6. 6. How to plan for customer consultation <ul><li>Focussed and structured approach </li></ul><ul><li>A 2 way process </li></ul><ul><li>Methods – need for good planning and management </li></ul><ul><li>Project management including clarity of objective. </li></ul><ul><li>Consider the characteristics of those being consulted ie their number, location and literacy levels etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Checklist </li></ul>
    7. 7. What needs to be considered <ul><li>The Department’s/Office’s experience, resources and capabilities </li></ul><ul><li>Supports eg working groups, QCS Network </li></ul><ul><li>Budget and time available </li></ul><ul><li>The type and depth of information required </li></ul><ul><li>Training and preparation for those involved in project </li></ul>
    8. 8. Consultation – other issues for consideration <ul><li>The need for consistency in approach </li></ul><ul><li>Working with/involving other agencies </li></ul><ul><li>Making the process as simple as possible </li></ul><ul><li>Making process as inclusive and representative as possible </li></ul>
    9. 9. Collation and analysis of information gathered <ul><li>Before engaging in consultation process </li></ul><ul><li>outputs need to be considered and how they will be handled. </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure sample sizes are adequate </li></ul><ul><li>Random selection of participants using computer software such as IDEAS </li></ul><ul><li>Computer packages also available for analysis of data. </li></ul>
    10. 10. Consultation – Dos <ul><li>Involve all concerned from the outset </li></ul><ul><li>Check out examples of good practice </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that all staff involved are trained and prepared </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that customers are assured of the confidential nature of the process and that the environment is safe and comfortable. </li></ul><ul><li>Plan how you will analyse submissions received </li></ul><ul><li>Evaluate your consultation process to ensure lessons learned are taken into account in future. </li></ul>
    11. 11. Consultation - Donts <ul><li>Rush in and avoid the necessary preparation </li></ul><ul><li>Ignore the needs of customers in the process – access, costs </li></ul><ul><li>Make the process unnecessarily complex – consider questions/questionnaires/ language </li></ul>
    12. 12. Consultation – examples <ul><li>Disability Allowance Customer Survey 2007 </li></ul><ul><li>Customer Panel in North East Region </li></ul><ul><li>Consultation in relation to the Department’s First Customer Charter </li></ul><ul><li>The development of a formal Comments and Complaints System </li></ul>
    13. 13. Questions? <ul><li>Muriel Cleary </li></ul><ul><li>Department of Social and Family </li></ul><ul><li>Affairs </li></ul><ul><li>Tel. 6732230 </li></ul><ul><li>Email: </li></ul>