nick venedi

Monday, 15 November 2010

Standards of service

This is a subject I raised on a few occasions when I was Branch Secretary. In fact I started a system where myself, and those working close to me, guaranteed that every member who emailed an inquiry or a question would get a reply within a 24 hour period. We managed to keep to this promise even if it meant that the reply the member got was to say that we would be looking at the issue they raised and they will get a response within an x period of time. This proved to be successful.

But I know of cases now where a member would either call or try to make contact with the union office and not get a reply for weeks. Unison operates a fairly good system where someone can ring Unison Direct. UD will then email a Branch Secretary and tell them to contact the member. But this service costs money as the member has to pay for the call. I am also aware of people trying to make contact when they are facing horrendous circumstances at work but cannot get through abandoned phone lines.

There are of course many in the TU movement who insist that we are not an AA or RAC type of organisation and we should not be getting into service level agreements or issuing guarantees. I profoundly disagree with this notion and I think we must offer or at least commit ourselves to some standards of 'excellence' members deserve better attention from the activists who are elected not just to enact revolution but to also support those in need.


  1. Hi Nick


  2. Hi John

    I was not referring to examples that I am aware of in Lambeth just in case anyone thinks am having a go at Lambeth. We all need to spend more time dealing with members day to day concerns though and deal with the revolution after closing time...

  3. I fully agree and the benefits of ensuring individuals are supported is they will in turn will support the union.