An Australian State Government organisation found that's its customer service capability was delivering unacceptable performance and not meeting its customer's requirements.
The customer services team were receiving a high number of end-user complaints. Root cause analysis suggested that staff resourcing and ongoing induction and training requirements were inadequate resulting deficient service capability.
A high level gap analysis was performed following the existing processes, with their respective measures, against that of the desired mapping of a service management framework. The analysis identified broken functional linkages and dependencies.
The approach that Building4Business employed was to convert the Service Management "what" and instil the Service Management "how" into the service desk and support teams. In addition competent resources were engaged to support in the remediation of these functions and processes. This provided direct mentoring and coaching to support staff.
A customer survey was conducted to establish a performance baseline and identify where further improvements could be acquired.
The number of service desks and contact numbers were consolidated. Each incoming client issue and request was linked to key customer satisfaction measurement. Within the first three month of the program the performance of the Service Desk moved from 38% to consistently achieving over 50%.
In the following six months a number of activities were undertaken, including online learning, brownbag lunches, streamlining of operational level agreements between the service desk and the various support teams, development of an internal handbook and other activities. During these six months the overall average improvement continued.
The above graph illustrates the peaks and trough of strategic change . The significant initial improvement was a result of enthusiastic adoption of new processes within the Service Desk and support teams. The loss of key resources caused the first dip in performance which was quickly addressed and the subsequent improvement was evident. The second dip in performance was due to a failure in staffing rotation and an unexpected number of issues over the Christmas holiday break. The current targeted performance levels indicate revitalisation, where staffing, measurement, knowledge and technology were being applied to ensure that the capability, processes and performance was and is sustained.
A simple communication framework provided a vehicle to show improvements in customer services. Communication was used to overcome the historical poor relations between the customers and the supply chain partners. Opening the communication channels led to better alignment between support teams and end user customer needs and understanding.
An internal Service Management handbook was created. This Service Support handbook allowed the teams to also identify the accountability, responsibilities and information dependencies of and between the functions and processes.
Using the SFIA competency framework, staff positions were redefined and matched to government staffing competency levels. Competency gaps were identified and formal performance measures at the team level were introduced. These measures will be disaggregated to individual staff performance plans over the next 12 months.
The improvement in Service Management in the organisation has provided the following benefits:
- Foundations for delivering processes as responsive services
- Efficiencies through process innovation and integration
- New value from existing assets by utilising tools and models
- Reduced operational costs with self-managing capabilities
- Improved staff productivity by identifying process that could be automated
- Increased the speed and quality with appropriate change and technology management