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Thread: Customer Service Questionnaire

  1. #1
    Cyburbian plankton's avatar
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    Customer Service Questionnaire

    Does your Building & Planning Department have a customer survey form that I could "borrow"?

    Do you have experience or thoughts on using customer surveys to gauge staff performance?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Plus Zoning Goddess's avatar
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  3. #3
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    Greensburg, Kansas
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    A survey was conducted before I arrived. Terrible, terrible questions. The commission was out to "get" a particular inspector. Fortunately, it backfired with only two negative responses.

    I recently conducted a series of half hour interviews with major contractors about our development review process. We gave them in advance a page of "talking points" to consider. I could share the talking points, but remember that they should be geared to your community issues.

    Another approach is to go to the front desk. Randomly take a client and invite them for a cup of coffee to share their "experiences" with you.

    I do not think a survey is a good method to judge staff performance. A survey should be about the departmental performance, not an individual.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian plankton's avatar
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    Thanks for the immediate feedback. I have to agree that customer surveys seem like an "out to get you" approach to dealing with staff issues. --> The disgruntled contractors seem to be unwilling to write their complaints down (I think they're afraid of being retaliated against) so I thought the survey would be one way to get it written down.......

    Perhaps contacting the contractors directly and inviting them in for a chat is a better way to go......At least that way, if they wish to remain nameless, I could still document the meeting and relevant comments.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    Plankton,
    I guaranteed that names would not be used. Glad I did, because one city commissioner got blasted more than staff. There was a condition perhaps unique to us, that involved other departments. Because of that, our study was two-pronged: I interviewed contractors as previously mentioned; and the city manager interviewed members of our "review team" (engineer, public works, zoning admin, building official, fire, and me).

    Fear of retribution is a real concern. Get to know the contractors out of the office. Get involved in homebuilders. Find where they hang out. Let them know you are interested. They will open up more than you ever wanted to hear.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian plankton's avatar
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    Sounds like a good plan to me.

    OT - I have a considerable amount of respect for general contractors. I'm honestly not sure why they are oftentimes stereotyped as mullet-headed, pro wrestling addicts. The avatars on this site are off the hook!! I have found contractors in this area to be generally very skillful, knowledgeable, and conscientious people, oftentimes showing up at various events to volunteer their time and skills for the benefit of the community.

    Anyway, I think I'm starting to get a good plan of attack going......thanks again.

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