Issue - meetings

Customer Access Strategy

Meeting: 16/10/2018 - Cabinet (Item 106)

106 Customer Access Strategy pdf icon PDF 88 KB

Report of Executive Member People and Information, Councillor Alison Webb.

Additional documents:


The Executive Member for People and Information informed members that the Customer Access Strategy had been designed to support the wider aims of the Corporate Plan and priorities, and in particular to ‘provide the right services, at the right time and in the right way’.  The report had been presented to the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Commission where a number of suggested changes had been raised by Members and incorporated into the document.


It was highlighted that within the strategy it suggested Credit cards were not able to be used to pay for the garden waste services; however it was confirmed that residents were able to use this form of payment.


The Deputy Leader thanked the Commission for their input into the Strategy and said Members had an important role to play as digital champions by encouraging residents to use the digital services wherever possible.


Councillor Wilkinson said he had recently experienced problems where residents had had issues with accessing the housing information online and were advised to call the contact centre.  The Executive Member for Growth confirmed he would look into the problem in more detail.


Councillor Crawford asked where the training for residents would take place.  The Deputy Leader explained that the final details were being considered; however work was under way with Norfolk County Council to work with communities to uplift the digital skills.  It was hoped that further information would be available early 2019.


Members were content with the strategy subject to a minor spelling amendment and reference to the credit card.


Reasons for recommendations

The strategy sets out a clear plan for making best use of Council resources to meet the needs of its customers, achieving value for money for the Council and its residents.



1.     Approve the Customer Access Strategy, and that it be implemented from April 2019 to align with the Council’s new Corporate Plan.

2.     Propose changes to the Customer Access Strategy.

3.     Do nothing



1)     The draft Customer Access Strategy be approved;

2)     The strategy be implemented from April 2019, to align with the Council’s new Corporate Plan.

Meeting: 27/09/2018 - Overview and Scrutiny Commission (Item 101)

101 Customer Access Strategy (Agenda Item 8) pdf icon PDF 90 KB

Report of Executive Member People and Information, Councillor Alison Webb.

Additional documents:


This report had been scrutinised previously by the Commission and had been altered at their request. 


Councillor Crawford considered it was a vast improvement, but he was still concerned about the 25% of Breckland residents who did not have the ability to go online.  He was reassured that people would still be able to phone in for assistance.


The concerns about vulnerable people were understood.  Most services would still be available on the phone or face to face at libraries and in the main offices. 


Councillor T Hewett pointed out that the wording on page 36 of the Strategy should say that the Council would be providing ‘excellent services’ not good.  The Executive Member for People and Information agreed to that change.


It was also confirmed that the document would be proof read before it was published. 


RESOLVED that subject to the minor amendment agreed above Members supported the adoption of the Customer Access Strategy.


Meeting: 17/08/2018 - Overview and Scrutiny Commission (Item 90)

90 Customer Access Strategy pdf icon PDF 86 KB

Report of Executive Member People and Information, Councillor Alison Webb.

Additional documents:


The Executive Member for People and Information presented the report to Members outlining the intended customer improvements the strategy intended to make, which would bring benefits to both the Customer and the Council.


With most people (86%) accessing the internet in Breckland on a regular basis, the strategy’s key aim was to encourage and support more customers to self-serve; by improving the online services residents would choose to use them as the first point of contact with the Council.


There were barriers in allowing customers to access the online services such as poor broadband access or lack of digital skills.  The strategy outlined the Council’s role in helping to improve the digital skills and connectivity of the residents within the district.


By providing residents with a much improved online service, it would allow the Council to focus its more personalised contact arrangements (i.e. face-to-face) on those residents who needed the support the most.


Councillor Dimoglou congratulated the Executive Member on being forward thinking and energetic within her role.  However, he raised his concern that the strategy gave weight to the use of online services, and excluded the use of the phone.


The Executive Member expressed that the strategy did not look to withdraw any channels of communication to the Council, but that improvements would be made to the online service which would free up resource to support to those who contacted the Council by telephone. The Customer Contact Centre provided support within the Libraries across the district and Officers were able to demonstrate how to use the online services through their mobile devices.


Councillor Kybird asked if the necessary budget was available to deliver the enhanced service. The Executive Manager for Information added that it would be discussed in the following report, and whilst there was capability, extra resource would be needed which was covered within the ICT and Digital Strategy report.


Councillor Jermy had noticed that there had been improvements in the way the Council engaged with the public, especially with social media.  He went on to say that he had used the ‘report it’ function regularly and asked if improvements could be made to include that once a fly-tip had been cleared the reporter be informed; and, if a fly-tip had occurred on land that was not Breckland Council’s, that the reporter be informed to enable them to contact who was responsible for it.


Members asked to be provided with regular information so that they could include in parish magazines.  The Executive Manager for Information added that there was a function on the website to sign-up to receive news alerts.


Members were informed that residents were able to access training provided in libraries.  Budget had been allocated to create a project to build on the digital skills within Breckland, and Members were assured that it would not duplicate what was already being provided.


The Chairman agreed that the information should be shared to allow Members to communicate the information to Parish Councils.


Councillor Hewett suggested that information sessions  ...  view the full minutes text for item 90