Councillors endorse Customer Charter

A blue sign saying 'Customer Service' is in the foreground with a seated woman leaning against a desk in the background.

The City of Ballarat will seek community feedback on its first draft Customer Charter following endorsement for community engagement at last night’s August Ordinary Council Meeting.  

The draft Customer Charter is a document outlining what residents can expect when interacting with the City of Ballarat.  

To support the implementation of the charter, Council officers have also developed Customer Response Standards. These standards will guide the actions of staff and enable monitoring of performance against the expectations outlined in the charter.  

The Customer Response Standards, which form part of the draft Customer Charter propose:  

  • Customers should expect a response from the City of Ballarat within three business days for standard/common requests and reports.  
  • Responses to complex requests that require more extensive investigation or referral to third parties will commence within 10 business days.  
  • Correspondence should be responded to within 10 business days.  
  • Phone calls should be returned within three business days.
  • Complaints should be managed in accordance with the Complaints Management Policy.  

The draft Customer Charter and subsequent Customer Response Standards were developed following an extensive consultation period involving both internal and external consultation. This included:  

  • Reviewing comparable charters adopted by other councils.
  • Internal consultation with a focus on customer-facing departments.
  • A public MySay survey, which was also promoted through the Disability Advisory Committee, LGBTQIA+ Advisory Committee, the Koorie Engagement Action and Intercultural Advisory Committee.  
  • Post-call surveys undertaken by the City of Ballarat’s Customer Service team, and hardcopy surveys at the Phoenix Customer Service Centre.  

The draft Customer Charter also provides a commitment to establishing new methods of keeping residents who submit requests or reports to the City of Ballarat up to date with progress relating to their request or report, particularly in relation to notifying residents when their request or report has been closed out.  

The City of Ballarat is currently trialing several new methods to keep residents informed throughout the lifespan of their report or request — including with the Snap Send Solve app — with promising results so far.  

City of Ballarat Mayor Cr Des Hudson encouraged Ballarat residents to provide their feedback on the draft Customer Charter.  

“We have heard from the community that improving communication with residents who contact the City of Ballarat is a priority,” he said.  

“Developing a Customer Charter, the subsequent Customer Response Standards and new methods of keeping residents informed throughout the lifespan of their reports and request are some of the ways we are prioritising customers’ experiences with the City of Ballarat.”  

Residents can provide feedback on the Draft Customer Charter by visiting the City of Ballarat MySay page. The MySay survey will be available from 25 August until 22 September.