A year of work in progress – day 170

Day 170 – 8 October 2014

Are you enjoying Customer Service Week?   Today was another big day for us as we held an ICT Awareness Day in the Durham Room in County Hall. We kept the Senior Leadership Team meeting to a couple of hours to make ourselves available for the event but having a shorter meeting didn’t make it any less intense. Pam was on holiday as well which didn’t help. Barbara gave us an update on the Senior Project Leads meeting from last week.

They’ve started to focus on the Rocks in the Stream, issues that get in the way of their day to day work. They’ve picked the top three. Each of them has been spending time on the Service Desk which has highlighted the importance of this exercise.

When I got down to the Awareness Day it seemed very busy but the ratio of ICT people to customers was a little high for my liking. The team had not been very busy. Steady was the word that was used. There was a good buzz around the room though.

We had eight stands in total covering many of the things that people say they have problems with on a daily basis: How to log and chase calls through the Service Desk and how to use the portal; IT security and how to work in a more agile fashion; geographic information services; video conferencing, using the telephones and using Microsoft Lync; getting the most from the multi-functional printers and mobile phones; Digital Durham; networking including a demonstration of the drone and; design and print including the mailing machine.

The stands looked fantastic and very professional. There was even a demonstration of the drone. We could have done with more people to see them. Next time someone asks how do I use so and so I can always reply with ‘why didn’t you come along on the day?’ I sent out a reminder note to all of the Heads and Tier 4 managers and I did get some nice compliments back. I’ve got a few ideas as to how to take the idea forward.

The council has also launched the Customer First Strategy (which is now complete following public consultation and input by more than 200 employees). I know that it sets out how we deliver customer service that provides value for money, flexibility and choice, whilst putting our customers at the heart of everything we do.

After lunch we had the first meeting of the Records Management & Archives Work Stream, part of the Office Accommodation Programme. Everything has to have a grand sounding title. Its main focus was on the statutory archiving of paper documents that are held in the basement of County Hall. At some time (and hopefully soon) we’ll need to focus on electronic semi-permanent records as well. That might be a separate work stream though altogether.

We then had Resources Management Team where I had a couple of unexpected reports.

Learning points for today: vaguely happy is finance speak for delighted; Neil is a responsible person; if you don’t come along you can’t complain; where you sit is where you are going to stand and; management is a management responsibility.

Today’s enjoyment rating 8/10 – a good day but disappointment is a virtue.

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