Following an in-depth review and external assessment of the organisation, the Security Industry Authority has been awarded the Customer Service Excellence standard.
This means that the SIA’s service has been shown to meet Government standards of excellence, and is benchmarked against other high-performing organisations. The SIA demonstrated how feedback and comments from customers have been taken into account to make ongoing improvement to its customer service.
The Customer Service Excellence standard tests areas that are most important for customers, such as delivery, timeliness, information, professionalism and staff attitude. It also tests whether the organisation understands the needs of its customers and how satisfied they are with the service they receive.
An independent external assessor carried out on-site reviews to examine the SIA’s documents, reports and research. During the final assessment the assessor met with customers, partners and staff to ask about the services the SIA provides, the partnerships it has and improvements that are being made. Following the site visit the assessor presented recommendations to a panel of judges.
The final report stated that:
- SIA staff were committed to providing effective customer services, enhancing the customer experience through their professionalism and focus.
- SIA staff were passionate about their roles and keen to play a major part in the organisation’s success for the benefit of the customer.
- Strong relationships existed between the SIA and its partners, which resulted in demonstrable benefits for customers.
- Strong leadership had helped to develop the SIA into a high performance organisation which was still showing continuous improvements.
Customer Service Excellence requires organisations to consider exactly who their customers are, the services provided, and how the organisation can improve. For the SIA this improved understanding has resulted in a better service with high levels of customer satisfaction. Gaining the award is not a one off exercise and an important aspect is continuous customer service improvement. Each year the SIA will have to show assessors that it still meets the standard.
Assistant Director of customer service and quality improvement Christy Hopkins said: “Achieving the Customer Service Excellence standard is a significant achievement and we are very pleased to receive this recognition. We are particularly pleased that this award recognises the improvements we’ve made to make sure we meet the needs of our customers. But this isn’t an end, we will continue to work to ensure that those who pay for and use our services influence the way we improve in the future. For example, we have recently lowered our licence processing target time from 80% within 30 days, to within 25 days.”
Liverpool Direct Limited, which manages the SIA customer contact centre, was also award the standard for the SIA service. LDL Chief Executive David McElhinney said: “There is considerable status to achieving the Government Customer Service Excellence standard. This is well deserved recognition for our staff who deliver a first class service to the SIA and its customers. It confirms our commitment to our vision ‘to place the customer at the heart of everything we do’.”