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Letter: What Will GBC Do to Improve Its Answering Service?

Published on: 19 Dec, 2021
Updated on: 19 Dec, 2021

From: Brian Holt

In response to: Even Councillors Can’t Get Through to GBC

Council tenants have had this problem for the last two years. They are put “on hold” then, after waiting about an hour, get cut off.

When they redial they wait again and hope, this time, someone will answer their call. One can spend all day on the telephone trying to get through.

What makes it worse and slower is having a person answer that does not know what to do. Callers need someone with experience to speed up the answering process.

The old system was better when callers could ring the required department direct and speak to a person with the knowledge required to deal with the call.

I know some councillors already know about this, but what is going to be done by Guildford Borough Council to finally sort this problem out now, not wait another two years doing nothing about it.

Editor’s note: This letter has been referred to GBC for a response.

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Responses to Letter: What Will GBC Do to Improve Its Answering Service?

  1. Howard Fisher Reply

    December 19, 2021 at 1:25 pm

    When I contacted my local councillors about the appalling service when calling the Guildford Council switchboard in August this year, this extract from their Director of Service Delivery’s reply shows their complacent approach to the problem. If anything the situation has got worse despite the empty assurances of Ian Doyle who wrote:

    “Unfortunately we are very busy at the moment with many services experiencing much higher demand than usual. Whilst every effort is being made to respond to calls in a timely manner, wait times are higher than we would like or expect. We have seen an improving picture in this area since April and expect this trend to continue in the coming weeks and months.”

  2. Valerie Thompson Reply

    December 19, 2021 at 2:43 pm

    Some weeks ago I waited half an hour on the phone trying to talk to the planning department of GBC. No one ever answered.

    In the past, there was always someone to pass on calls to the relevant department. I understand many people are working from home, but surely one person could respond within a minute or two and pass on messages, even if we are unable to talk immediately to a human in the department one is attempting to contact.

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