I was doing a little research for a Value Ireland article I’m hoping to publish in the next few weeks when I came across the Institute of Customer Service. What a great idea, I thought, especially for us in Ireland where we regularly suffer from shockingly poor customer service. According to their website:
The Institute of Customer Service is the professional body for customer service. Our main purpose is to lead performance and professionalism in customer service.
It seems like it’s a primarily UK based organisation, but, strangely, Dublin City Council is something called a “founder council member”. Back in 2005, DCC hosted a conference to try to entice other Irish businesses to join.
Now, I’ll be the first to highlight that I’m very cynical about many of these so-called professional organisations – most of which appear to be for the benefit of those who’ve set them up to keep themselves in jobs through member subscriptions.
But here’s the listing of Irish companies, or other companies who operate in Ireland, who are members of the Institute of Customer Service:
- Allianz Ireland
- Bewleys Coffee Ltd.
- Conduit Ltd.
- Dublin Bus
- Dublin City Council
- First Active
- Halifax Bank of Scotland
- Irish Life and Permanent
- Kerry Group
- Pricewaterhouse Coopers
- Stena Line
- Ulster Bank
- Zurich Financial (Eagle Star)
Do you deal with any of these companies? Have you noticed that their customer service offering is significantly better than their direct competitors? Should we be crying out for all Irish businesses to become members, or does it not matter. Should membership of such an organisation not actually be a pre-requisite for looking after your customers?