NI Chamber of CommerceView Success Stories
Formed in 1783, we have represented the interests of business and commerce across Northern Ireland for over 227 years. We now have a large and active membership of almost 1,000 businesses, and a reach of over 10,000, from the smallest SME and sole trader to the largest corporations, PLCs and institutions.
As a membership organisation, providing an effective, efficient service to our membership is of the utmost importance. Whilst we have been good at developing relationships with our members in the past, we did not have a joined up team approach to customer service.
Having been involved in the development of the “Gold Star” Service Excellence award with the Centre for Competitiveness and NI Consumer Council we recognised that achieving the award ourselves would be highly beneficial to our business.
Working towards the accreditation enabled us to focus on delivering for the customer and offered the opportunity to improve on what we do well and address those elements that required further development.
The Gold Star Service Excellence Award has firmly placed the customer at the heart of our business. The focus it has given us has led to the introduction of a new customer service charter and member retention scheme.
We have brought the whole team on board to ensure our customers receive the best level of service no matter who they are dealing with. All staff have received training which, combined with the customer service charter and its associated procedures, guarantees consistency of service.
The member retention scheme has had a significant impact on how we do business, giving our member companies the opportunity to have their voice heard and shape the Chamber offering. The scheme offers member companies a point of contact that can outline the benefits of membership and provide information on relevant upcoming events or policy issues that would be of interest.
We are seeing the results already as our member interactions increase and our members companies become more engaged. Our events continue to be well attended and we have listened to our members to ensure there is something for everyone.
There is no doubt the increased focus on our customers has been a successful strategy which the entire team have bought into.
Expected Medium & Long Term Business Benefits
- Increased engagement with member companies
- Higher retention levels across membership
- Improved reputation
- Increased business
- More member utilisation of Chamber services
Ann McGregor. Chief Executive Officer
"Northern Ireland businesses are competing in a global economy and as such need to set themselves apart from the competition. Ensuring your company delivers world class customer service can be a good starting point and enhances the potential for businesses of all sizes to grow. The Northern Ireland Chamber was pleased to be involved in developing the Service Excellence Gold Star scheme and congratulates the Centre of Competitiveness for introducing an initiative which could put the customer at the heart of organisations across Northern Ireland."