At Bath & North East Somerset we value our customers and their feedback so we closely monitor all the compliments, comments and complaints that we receive and use the information gained to improve the services that we provide.

As part of these improvements we provide feedback to our customers on issues that have been identified as a result of the complaints received. We will highlight any service improvements that have taken place, or provide further information to clarify any issues that may have arisen as a result of any policy or legislative changes.

The last quarterly report is available for you to download below:

Quarterly customer feedback summary Apr - Jun 2017 (PDF 493KB)

If you would like this report in a different format, please contact us. Previous quarterly reports are also available at the bottom of this page.

This report gives a corporate overview of the customer feedback that has been received and responded to in the past quarter, and notes any key actions or considerations that have resulted from a high level review.

Our Service Teams, responsible for specific services delivered by the Local Authority, handle their own customers' feedback cases and provide quarterly updates on trends, issues or changes that the service is undertaking as a direct or partial result of the feedback they have received. Some of the key outcomes of that feedback are detailed below, and in the “You said / We did…” section of the quarterly summary report, compiled directly from the Customer Feedback Officers (CFOs) responsible for each service area.

Service Trends / recurring themes You said... We did...

People & Communities Directorate

Children & Young People

There is no identifiable trend from the customer feedback cases during this quarter.

We have seen more complaints surrounding the SEN team and Education Inclusion.

The nature of these complaints have been particular to the individuals involved and the responses to the customers have reflected this.

Place Directorate

Heritage Services & Tourism

A visitor was given the wrong information regarding applying for a Discovery Card resulting in her paying full price entrance to the Thermae Spa.

A letter of apology was sent. Staff were reminded of the correct identification that was needed for a Discovery Card.

A customer felt that front of house and café staff were not welcoming.

Staff have been reminded of the importance of being attentive and welcoming to all visitors.

A member of the public alleged that the Heritage Services van clipped their arm damaging an expensive watch.

The member of the public was sent  a claim form by the Insurance team, which has not been returned.

It was reported that a Heritage Services van driver stopped the van on a cycle path.

Member of staff was interviewed and reprimanded (they heard banging from the van and wanted to investigate). A letter of apology was sent.
Highways & Traffic

The main themes this quarter relate to the new London Road Bus Lane, resurfacing and street lighting.   

We have received a number of compliments for prompt repairs of potholes and the replacement of double yellow lines.

You said the London Road Bus Lane appears to be causing delays for lots of commuters.

We advised customers of the London Road Bus Lane trial period. We explained the original purpose of this, which was to support the Network Rail bus replacement service during works to upgrade Bath Spa. The project manager has recorded their comments to be used in an ongoing consultation. 

You said that road resurfacing processes take too long.

We have continued to explain the resurfacing process fully and have reiterated the time frame within which the road surface will settle and lines will be replaced.

We sent out a leaflet ahead of time to explain this process. 

You said you aren’t happy with the new street light specifications.

We have assured customers that new streetlights have been designed in accordance with the requirements of the current national standards for Road Lighting. Where necessary, we have added shields to those directed towards customer’s windows and have explained that the changes were made in order to comply with requirements to reduce C02 emissions and energy consumptions.

Neighbourhood Environment (Waste Services)

The main complaints received this quarter relate to Garden Waste Collections.

Garden waste bin has not been collected. This is a paid service which we are not receiving.

The majority of complaints were upheld and apology given. We ask residents to leave missed garden waste bins at kerbside for collection and report it to us by 5:30pm on the working day following the date the collection was due. Our policy is to return for reported missed garden waste collections within 5 working days.

We continue to receive positive feedback about the level of customer service we provide at the recycling centres, such as these customer comments.

“I was really impressed by how well Bath recycling centre is organised and how helpful the staff were.”

 

“What a lovely lot of employees you have doing a difficult job many people might not think much of.”

 

“I would like to compliment the staff at Radstock Road recycling centre.  The Staff are all so friendly and helpful.”

We are grateful to receive positive feedback and always pass this on to our colleagues.
Neighbourhood Environment (Recycling) The main theme was related to box return following collection. You said that the crew were leaving recycling containers  further away from collection point. We updated our training with crew and carried out “toolbox” training on box presentation.
Parks & Green Spaces

The main themes are seasonal matters: grass needs cutting and vegetation growth alongside paths and requests for tree removal works.

 

We have received complaints about the changes to the frequency of grass-cutting in and around B&NES district. We actively use social media: Twitter and Facebook to positively publicise the benefits to ecology and wildlife for leaving some areas of grass longer than previous years. We have revised the information on the Parks & Green Spaces Grounds Maintenance webpage to keep our customers informed.

Customers regularly Tweet and we receive several compliments per month regarding the good work that the Parks and Grounds staff does around the district.

We’re not cutting the grass as frequently as previous years.

We have been publicising, consulting and liaising with the local communities to help them understand why this work needs to be carried out.

We aim to keep local communities and residents informed throughout intended works. We aim to listen and resolve complaints and address concerns.

Public Protection & Health Improvement Services

One complaint was received relating to the Dog warden service.

In this instance the complaint was not upheld as valid.

One complaint was received relating to the Environmental Protection service.

In this instance the complaint was not upheld as valid.

One complaint was received about the leisure page of our website.

We apologised and updated the web page concerned.
Transport & Parking

In Passenger Transport we receive very low levels of feedback.

Service comment – The level of feedback about Passenger Services is very low. 

There was no specific customer feedback this quarter. Most feedback received is positive, with the service viewed as helping people access services and facilities. 
In Parking Services most feedback relates to individual issues or concerns. Some feedback relates to the issue of penalty charge notices which is replied to in accordance with the Parking statutory process rather than the Feedback and Complaint policy.

Our leaflet explaining we are unable to make refunds for unused ‘visitor’ parking permits could be clearer.

We continue to receive positive feedback about the level of customer service we provide, such as these customer comments:

“Thank you for such a swift response - I really appreciate it and am impressed by your efficiency!”

 

“Thank you so much for your help on Friday; we managed in the end, thankfully. 

 

Thank you, too, for such a prompt reply and the refund, much appreciated. 

 

What an excellent service you provide!”

We have made some changes to improve the content of this leaflet.

 

 

We are pleased to receive positive feedback and always pass this on to our colleagues

Customer Service is a key priority for us. We continue to support and develop our teams to uphold the highest of standards as Ambassadors of the Council.

Public Transport

In Public Transport, most feedback relates to individual issues or concerns. We also receive feedback for services provided and managed by commercial bus operators and liaise with them as appropriate.

You told us about damage to a local bus shelter due to vandalism.

We contacted the contractor - repairs were made and a replacement time table installed

You told us that the ‘real time’ information board at a local bus stop wasn’t working as there was no notice of the bus arriving.

We contacted the contractor and were able to let you know that the bus concerned was a ‘replacement’ bus which didn’t have the GPS tracking system on board.

Development Management (Planning)

The main reason for complaint continues to be disagreement with planning application decisions and officer handling of planning applications, there was one complaint against a planning enforcement decision. Slight rise in the number of complaints this quarter but none of the complaints were upheld.  There were five stage 2 (escalated complaint) requests but none of these warranted further investigations.  There were 18 compliments received during this quarter.

The majority of your complaints this quarter related to your dissatisfaction with a planning decision.  

Officers provided advice and guidance on potential next steps which can include the redesign and resubmission of a scheme, submission of an appeal against refusal of planning permission or the Council’s Complaints procedure. 

“BANES Building Control service have proven themselves to be helpful knowledgeable, efficient and friendly. Very reassuring qualities , which are appreciated”

 

Resources Directorate

Business Support There is no identifiable trend from customer feedback during this quarter.

One complaint was received in respect of a request under the Freedom of Information Act.

The responsible Director determined that no further action was required in this case. The complainant was provided with contact details for the Information Commissioner’s Office if they wished to pursue the matter further.

Customer Services

Complaints during this quarter related to recovery of unpaid Council Tax and staff attitude.

Received several compliments regarding the ability to obtain bus passes from our One Stop Shops with ease.

Complaint regarding the information given on Council Tax bills/statements.

Acknowledged that it is important to make Council Tax documentation easier to understand.

Arranged for staff training to assist them in explaining content of documentation to our customers. 

Documents were submitted to the council and not received by the Council Tax team.

Amended working practices to minimise the chance of this happening in future.

Libraries

This quarter trends for Library feedback related to:

Inaccurate information regarding opening times on the Council Connect Automated service. 

Unscheduled disruption to the Mobile Library service on certain days/ routes.

Unscheduled closures to Bath Central Library on Sundays.

You were given inaccurate information regarding opening times on the Council Connect Automated service.

We contacted Council Connect to request this information be changed. This has now happened.

The Library closed without sufficient notice on Sundays due to staffing issues.

Weekday staff volunteered to cover shifts without staff.

Permission to recruit more Sunday staff sought and given.

Due to unsociable use by certain borrowers the layout of specific areas of the library restricted customer access to shelves.


We moved shelving to make it more accessible/ user friendly for all customers.


Some members told us they felt 4 hour computer sessions are too long.

We explained that we have quick access sessions available for 30 min use and longer session computers are able to be booked in advance.

Some members have concerns regarding the proposed changes to Library provision.

We encouraged them to take part in the upcoming consultation.

Strategy & Performance

No negative feedback received during this quarter via the corporate process.

One suggestion received in this quarter regarding the number of homeless people in Bath.  

A response was provided by Community Safety.

Quarterly reports 2016/17

Quarterly reports 2015/16

Quarterly reports 2014/15

 

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