ATTACHMENTS: 1. CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE PROGRAM CHART

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1 INFORMATION REPORT REPORT TITLE: ITEM NUMBER: 1176 DATE OF MEETING: 14 JULY 2014 AUTHOR: JOB TITLE: RESPONSIBLE OFFICER: JOB TITLE: COMMUNITY GOAL: CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE PROGRAM ANNABEL SHINKFIELD MANAGER MARKETING, COMMUNICATIONS AND CUSTOMER SERVICE STEPHEN FAULKNER GENERAL MANAGER PEOPLE AND GOVERNANCE O5.2 A CUSTOMER-CENTRIC APPROACH ATTACHMENTS: 1. CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE PROGRAM CHART PURPOSE The purpose of this report is to provide Elected Members with the definition and strategic direction of the Customer Experience Program and outline the Three Key Pillars that will improve customer service delivery at the City of Unley. RECOMMENDATION MOVED: SECONDED: That: 1. The report be received. (This is page 3 of the Council Agenda Reports for 14 July 2014)

2 BACKGROUND The Customer Experience Program Exceptional customer service can provide a clear point of difference between organisations within and across industry sectors and enhances an organisation s reputation and strengthens its brand. It demonstrates an ability to get things done, providing a proactive approach to service and customer interaction that makes an organisation easy to do business with. It instils an approach that strives to exceed customer expectations. The City of Unley currently has no formally documented or strategic approach to customer service. The Customer Experience Program (Program) will deliver the framework, standards and reporting to ensure that the City of Unley is a leader in customer service delivery. There are a number of customer service policies and procedures currently in existence within the City of Unley. However, these policies and procedures require review to reflect contemporary customer service practices, provide consistent service level expectations, help to guide internal processes and support a customer centric approach to council activities. On that basis, a clear need for a strategic framework has emerged that will enable the City of Unley and its staff to apply a clear and consistent approach to both its internal and external customer interactions. Furthermore, this approach will aid the gathering of data and information that will inform evidence based decision making and support appropriate allocation of resources to improve the current service offering. A strategic framework will ensure that new technologies, along with organisational culture, structure and processes will develop and evolve holistically to enable staff to deliver responsive, effective and innovative service to customers. Goal 5 of the 4 Year Plan is Organisational Excellence which highlights and states activities that support Our path to a robust and sustainable Organisation. As a key component of the broader Organisational Culture Change Program, Goal 5 provides for a customer-centric approach and is underpinned by the following strategies: Establish a responsive and comprehensive customer service culture, and Ensure all processes and systems reflect a customer centric approach. To deliver those strategic imperatives, the Program was initiated in September This report outlines the Three Pillars of the Program and the anticipated timelines that will deliver on the Organisational Excellence strategies and provide a pathway for the City of Unley to be acknowledged as a customer service leader. (This is page 4 of the Council Agenda Reports for 14 July 2014)

3 A key focus over this period has been devoted to the implementation and refinement of the Customer Request System (CRS) including the progressing of on-line request lodgement and automated reporting. Council will be familiar with the results from the CRS which have been reported in Council s Quarterly Corporate Performance report. Allocation has been made within the Annual Business Plan and Budget for staff and financial resources to support the development and delivery of the Program. DISCUSSION The Program contains Three Pillars that are required for the success of the City of Unley s strategic service objectives. These pillars are: A Customer Request System A Customer Service Framework New Systems and Process Integration. The diagram below provides a graphical representation of the integration of the Pillars. A more detailed chart of the Program is attached for Member s information. Attachment 1 Customer Experience Program Customer Request System Customer Service Framework New Systems and Process Integration Manage and monitor customer interactions. Vision, Charter and Strategy to drive accountability and organisation culture change. Customer Service orientation is strategically and operationally embedded across the organisation. Customer Experience Program Pillars (This is page 5 of the Council Agenda Reports for 14 July 2014)

4 The Three Program Pillars Part A: Customer Request System The Customer Request System (CRS) was implemented in June 2013 to enhance customer service across the Council through the automated creation, monitoring, measurement and tracking of service and telephone requests lodged by City of Unley customers. The CRS is enabling Administration to monitor the numbers of requests received in any given period, understand the nature of requests, allocate resources in an informed fashion and assess its service performance through the closure or otherwise of requests. Furthermore, the CRS supports business objectives and will enable Administration to monitor trends and improve its business processes including service levels and associated workflows, and has the capability to integrate with current and future business systems. Implementation of the CRS to date encompasses the majority of organisational interactions and transactions undertaken with our customers and was incorporated across the organisation s major service areas including the Customer Service Centre, Assets and Infrastructure, and Parking and Rangers. Although a wider roll-out to other areas of the organisation has not yet been scoped, further work is required including the establishment of: Automated organisational reporting scheduled for July 2014 Defined service standards (anticipated first half ), and Development of the web interface for lodging customer requests aligned with service level standards, expected in the 3 rd quarter of Members have received customer service reports and performance data since November 2013 through the Quarterly Corporate Performance Report. Currently Administration is gathering and assessing baseline data that will help inform future decision making for the organisation. Members will be aware that current reporting is manual and extremely resource intensive, however, Administration is currently working with our supplier to automate all CRS reporting processes with anticipated completion in July Automation will significantly improve reporting efficiencies and productivity within the Administration. Part B: Customer Service Framework The Customer Service Framework (Framework) is an integral part of the program and goes to the heart of the organisation s public commitment to its customers. The Framework comprises two components, the Customer Service Charter and the Customer Experience Principles, Strategy and Plan. (This is page 6 of the Council Agenda Reports for 14 July 2014)

5 1. Customer Service Charter The Customer Service Charter (Charter) will be a public document which covers our service commitment and provides the framework for what our customers can expect from us. Currently in draft form, the Charter will be provided to Elected Members for input prior to a public release during the financial year. The Charter encompasses service delivery standards which will be agreed by all staff and will provide direction regarding organisational expectations. The Charter also provides a strong platform to initiate the development of the Customer Experience Principles, Strategy and Plan. 2. Customer Experience Principles, Strategy and Plan The Customer Experience Principles, Strategy and Plan will contain the principles and strategies which will provide tools and direction to support a whole-of-organisation customer-centric approach. The Strategy will comprise: A program to assist a whole-of-organisation participation with the Strategy and integrated with the existing Organisation Cultural program The establishment and refinement of systems and processes to support customer service delivery. The Plan will comprise elements including: Customer touchpoints (ie points at which customers interact with Council) A review of processes and external communications (eg dog registration, development and expiation notifications) The development and delivery of a training program to all staff Satisfaction measurement, and Customer service reporting. 3. Stakeholder Engagement Engagement with stakeholders will be an essential element to the development of the Framework and will ensure the expectations of customers and Council are considered, and capture service enhancement opportunities for: External and internal customers Elected Members Other stakeholders, including governments, visitors etc. (This is page 7 of the Council Agenda Reports for 14 July 2014)

6 Part C: New Systems and Process Integration This pillar is fundamental to, and underpins, the integration of the Customer Experience Program. It encompasses the fashion in which systems and processes align with our desired strategic objective, and working through this pillar will highlight gaps and barriers that impede service delivery. Deliverables that are integral to this pillar are: Policies and processes that are established across Council Technology that supports and underpins customer service outcomes The integration of technology to support processes and new systems. Work in this area will be on-going for the medium to longer term and has interdependencies with other key projects, including the web-site review and facilities booking system, both of which are scheduled for completion in June Furthermore, other areas of focus include Customer Service Centre systems that will provide staff with tools to better deal with enquiries, alignment with the Records Management System and future proofing customer service systems to support advancement and scalability of technologies. These are longer term activities and are an integral part of the Information Technology strategy which is currently under review, and are likely to be part of a two to four year implementation horizon. An imperative to the success of the Program is ensuring all customer service systems and processes continue to be aligned throughout the entire organisation. This will ensure effectiveness and efficiency in service delivery and provide a platform for organisation-wide service innovation. Current measurement tools: The City of Unley currently has a number of measurement structures in place to assist in measuring and tracking service delivery. CRS reporting focuses on completion of customer requests and is manually derived Call Centre statistics automated reports focused on call centre telephone performance, measured against organisational KPI s Web based, online lodgement of complaints, compliments and suggestions Customer Service Benchmarking Australia (CSBA) The SA Customer Service Benchmarking Initiative was undertaken by CSBA in partnership with six SA Councils in The survey involves an annual customer service survey of customers who have transacted with Council and provides feedback regarding the perceived performance of the City of Unley s interaction with its customers. (This is page 8 of the Council Agenda Reports for 14 July 2014)

7 Timelines for Implementation Customer Service Framework It is anticipated that the Customer Service Charter will be implemented by the end of the financial year, and will involve: Input from Elected Members and staff Development of a formatted document to be placed on our website, and Adoption of the document by all teams. The first phase of the Framework has begun with research into sector and nonsector service approaches. Systems and structures will be an on-going program, and is running concurrently with the other pillars of the Program. Benefits to Customers Implementation of the Three Pillars forming the Customer Experience Program will provide the following future benefits to customers: A publicly stated approach and commitment to customer service, including what customers can expect from the City of Unley A proactive approach to customer requests Improved knowledge management to move toward a first point of resolution outcome Improved efficiency in relation to service delivery, and Positions the City of Unley as easy to do business with, including online booking systems and consistency of customer experience. Finance and Policy Implications Finance There was no allocation of resource or budget to the Program at its inception, however an allocation of $77k has been provided in the Annual Business Plan and Budget and will accommodate staff and other requirements such as reporting and interface activity. While yet to be determined, future budget allocation will be required for the progression and implementation of the Program. Policy As previously stated, there are a number of Customer Service policies that require review as part of the Program. Review and consolidation of the policies will provide a single point of reference for staff regarding service expectations and service levels, leading to a consistent customer experience. (This is page 9 of the Council Agenda Reports for 14 July 2014)

8 CONCLUSION A customer-centric approach is a key element of the City of Unley s Organisational Excellence objectives within the 4 Year Plan. The strategic direction by Council to the Customer Experience Program will support and underpin this approach and ensure that new technologies, organisational culture, structure and processes will develop and evolve holistically to enable staff to deliver responsive, effective and innovative service to the City of Unley customers. (This is page 10 of the Council Agenda Reports for 14 July 2014)

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