A major £400,000 investment in customer services at Middlesbrough Council’s Customer Centre has reduced waiting times to a fifth of what they were.
A revised emphasis on assisting people towards self-service, which can be done easily online at home as well as at Middlesbrough Council centres, including Community Hubs, is currently being rolled out.
Comparisons of waiting times from before and after the refurbishment works show that previously people were spending around 25 minutes in the Customer Centre before their query was dealt with, which has now reduced to just five minutes and the early response from residents show that the improvements are going down well.
Amongst the comments from visitors were that the Customer Centre “looks so much better and it’s a nicer environment to come in to now” and that “made it a lot faster and easier for people and I don’t have to wait a long time, which is good. The building looks very nice”’
The Council’s approach to improved customer service aims to streamline the way local people access services and information in a manner and at a time that is convenient to them.
To support this flexible approach and enable residents to use their phone or tablet to pay for their Council Tax, apply for school places, finding out bin collection dates or even request a copy of a birth certificate, the Council have already rolled out free Wi-Fi across our community hubs and many other civic spaces giving unprecedented levels of free access today.
Middlesbrough Mayor Dave Budd said: “It is hugely important that the Council leads the way in offering everyone the easiest and most efficient way of accessing services.
“That means those who want to carry out their business at home or on the go via a mobile device can do so at a time of their choosing, but also that those who prefer to use the phone or visit the Customer Centre in person can continue to do so.
“The benefits of this are clear to all and we are already seeing reduced waiting times in the Customer Centre with those who are happy to self-serve able to do so and those who require further assistance given the attention they require.
“We are delighted with the initial response from those who have used the service and we will continue to work to ensure that everyone enjoys a positive customer experience.”