Agenda item

Customer Access Performance Report


A report was presented by Sarah Jenkins, Head of Service – Customer Access Service.  A revised page 48 was circulated to Cabinet Committee Members.


The Customer Access Service delivered the first point of contact for telephone, email and social media interactions for 28 Lancashire County Council services, handling over 1.1 million customer interactions per year. This equated to approximately two thirds of all customer contacts coming into the council.


It was reported that the reduction in contacts received was an indication that we may be starting to realise achievements in the ongoing campaign to assist appropriate channel shift for services, allowing effective self-service through the website.


The Cabinet Committee noted there was a difference in the number of telephone calls received to those answered.  It was explained that this could be due to people putting the phone down before it had been answered, but that many of these people would either ring back or email in.  There had also been a drop in the number of telephone calls received since the previous year.  It was noted that lots of work had been done with Children's Services which had reduced the amount of repeat calls; we were also looking to do this work with Adult Services.  In addition, more people were using self-service through the website.  County Councillor Khan informed the Cabinet Committee that she had received positive feedback from constituents on the email service.


Sarah reported that the Customer Access Service had taken part in an Association of Directors of Adult Social Services Peer Review in November, to help identify best practice and potential opportunities for improved working practices, and that the Service had received excellent feedback.  In addition, for Adult Safeguarding, the accuracy and timeliness of Customer Access had recently been singled out for praise by external consultants, who had been commissioned to review the Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub.


It was noted that the AskHR Service attracted one of the highest numbers of contacts.  As part of the Customer Access savings programme, 7 full time equivalent posts had been reduced in April 2018 for the AskHR Service, and temporary funding from within the Customer Access Service budget had been agreed until December 2018. The project had focussed on the online uptake of HR enquiries and customer self-service, to reduce the volume of HR contacts.


In relation to the Blue Badge Scheme, improvements had been made in application processing time and waiting times.  In addition, the Department for Transport had recently undertaken a consultation which had resulted in a decision to extend the criteria to those with non-physical disabilities.


It was reported that Customer Access savings delivered to date totalled £1,005,000.  This saving included a figure of £58,000 to transfer 2.50 full time equivalent posts to the Emergency Duty Team, as part of the Customer Access Service redesign which had been implemented in September 2018.


As part of the Genesys Programme Phase 2, Sarah reported that emphasis would be put on more automation, where appropriate, and it was reported that the following work streams would be delivered:


·  Auto Attendant Utterance

·  Auto Attendant Call By Name

·  Data integration

·  Skype and Email Integration

·  Social Media and Webchat

·  Acorn POP


County Councillor Driver and County Councillor Buckley thanked Sarah for all the hard work being done within the Customer Access Service.


Resolved: That the Cabinet Committee on Performance Improvement note the report.

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