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M25 Customer Services Group

M25 Customer Services Group

Earlier this year, the M25 Consortium approved a proposal for a new Customer Services Group. The proposal was timely because of the increased awareness of the importance of the customer experience in libraries and the huge scope that there is to work together in many areas. Along similar lines to cpd25, the group will have its own steering group and a series of task groups reporting through to the main M25 Consortium Steering Group.

The group’s aims are to:

  • Discuss and share knowledge of new developments in customer service generally, and within libraries more specifically
  • Share knowledge and techniques used around measures already implemented at member libraries
  • Discuss and develop methods for improving customer service, especially where there is potential for active collaborative working

All M25 institutions were invited to a kick-off event at King’s College London on the 26th April. The successful event was well attended and began with a presentation by the group chair Erin Caseley (Associate Director, Customer Services Strategy at King’s College London) and vice chair Libby Homer (Assistant Director, (Operations) at SOAS). Erin and Libby outlined the background to the group and their vision for what it will achieve via a number of task groups. All participants then had a chance to discuss the task groups and feedback ideas. These were taken on board and the task groups were re-configured as a result. The afternoon finished with a session of speed networking to help everyone get to know each other. Feedback from the speed networking was positive, with participants saying it was exhausting but fun and they made useful contacts and talked to new people.

Since the event, the task groups have been formed. Each task group will focus on a specific area of work related to customer service in libraries and achieve a range of outcomes that will benefit all members of the M25 Consortium. The task groups are as follows:

One of the main tasks of this group will be to construct a benchmarking repository and facilitate the submission of data, leading to a wide range of useful information being available to all.

Communication and Events
This group has broad aims to assist us all in knowledge sharing via the M25 staff room, events and conferences. The group will also work closely with cpd25 to plan relevant training courses.

Quality in Customer Service
This group will focus on providing mutual support for libraries applying for recognition via customer service standards, as well as investigating a range of methods for achieving quality in service provision.

Service Improvement
This group will deliver on measures where we can work together to improve customer service, such as Mystery Visiting. They are also considering developing some case studies with examples of best practice.

The steering group is as follows:

  • Erin Caseley, King’s College (Chair)
  • Libby Homer, SOAS (Vice chair)
  • Jan Haines, Oxford Brookes (Secretary)
  • Lis Hannon, UCL (Chair, Benchmarking)
  • Angus Brown, Imperial College (Chair, Communication and Events)
  • Christina Lewis, University for the Creative Arts (Chair, Quality in Customer Service)
  • Matthew Brooke, Royal Holloway (Chair, Service Improvement)

The task groups are meeting throughout June to plan their first objectives and will report back to the steering group in early July.