We delivered a training solution that would standardise the approach of advisers and provide a structure for call handling, leading to a 97% customer satisfaction score

The Requirement

NHS Informatics Merseyside provides IT services and support to NHS hospitals and clinics across Merseyside. The service delivers IT support to circa 15,000 health and social care professionals and its IT service desk typically receives around 10,000 contacts a month, over 70% of which are by phone. The organisation had for some time been considering the need to focus more on its customer service, so that service desk staff could deliver an exceptional customer experience over the telephone. However, the generic customer service training it had tried had proven irrelevant and delivered few tangible benefits. Wanting a more bespoke solution, it contacted us.

The Solution

We proposed a training solution that would standardise the approach of advisers and provide a structure for call handling. The first part of the solution involved building a bespoke Quality Framework that represented the standards of excellence sought by the client. The new framework enabled managers to have better quality conversations and coach the soft skills performance of call handling against a set of clear guidelines.
A series of training workshops provided the perfect platform to launch the Quality Framework with the teams. This allowed time for discussion, exploration and practical call listening activities.
We used the team’s own words to demonstrate the need for change: we compiled a mix tape of the different greetings being used, over a house music beat: the team were instantly engaged.
Coaches and managers participated in the workshops with their teams to ensure all messages were agreed and consistent. We also provided a separate three-day Coaching Skills Workshop which ensured confident support of the framework; and the implementation of the action plans from the team’s training workshops, to ensure lasting results. This has been supported by ongoing e-learning using our Contact Centre Team Leader Masterclass.

The Result

The impact of the training has been immense. Customer satisfaction scores are now up to a hugely impressive 97% and NHS Informatics Merseyside was the first NHS Service Desk in England to achieve 3-star accreditation from the Service Desk Institute. In 2015, it was Runner-up in the ‘Best Large Service Desk’ award. Crucially, the improvements have been sustained with ongoing training and a customer service and quality ethos fully embedded in the business.
Feedback from the customer included:
“The Contact Centre Masterclass series of videos provide thought-provoking content for contact centre team leaders covering a wide range of relevant themes. Whilst each video can be viewed in a single sitting, I have found that I quite often come back to view specific content from time to time when we are working on improving a particular aspect of our service.”
D.Gordon, Informatics Merseyside

“It is now coming up to 12 months since we implemented the quality framework, and whilst we are definitely not perfect (who is?), the customer service and quality ethos is now firmly embedded within the team, and we now deliver a consistently high quality service that always puts the customer at the very heart of what we do. This has been recognised both internally with customer satisfaction scores reaching 97%, and recognised externally by being the first NHS Service Desk in England to achieve SDI 3 star certification, and being judged as Runners-up in the ‘Best Large Service Desk’ award 2015.”

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