Stacy Hartley

Customer Champion, Complaints 

Archana Makol

Stacy Hartley has been an Accent customer for over 20 years and works full time running a beauty salon. She has also been a member of our Customer Experience Committee for over a year. As a Customer Champion, Stacy will continue sitting on the Committee but will focus on how we manage customer complaints.

Congratulations on your new Customer Champion role, Stacy! What will your role as Customer Champion for complaints involve?

I will be looking at the complaints that come in and trying to understand why we are getting complaints in the first place, and when they do come in, how we can answer them in a good way for the customers, so we can get the best outcome for them and for Accent. However, I will be able to act impartially and request any information that I need. So far, I have seen some complaints documents and the outcomes. It’s very transparent.

What has been your experience of being on the Customer Experience Committee to date?

I have been on Accent’s Customer Experience Committee for just over a year now and it’s been really interesting in that it’s revealed that everybody I’ve come across wants to make that positive change for customers, that’s what I’ve seen the most of. They look at all the services, monitor progress, make recommendations, and essentially come together to improve the customer experience.

Do you feel like you can really interrogate and challenge things on behalf of customers on the Committee?

Committee members are very open to any questions. They want us, as customers of Accent, to get involved as much as possible, and anything we ask for they are happy to help with, whether that’s getting documentation, or facts and figures about something. They are happy to supply information to help us in our roles on the committee.

Do you have a different perception of the motivation of Accent now you sit on the Customer Experience Committee then before you started in that role?

Yes, being there at a senior level you can see the passion of those wanting to make change is different. They are not just talking the talk, they are walking the walk, and you can see that when you go to a meeting.

We know through our Tenant Satisfaction Measures that satisfaction with our complaints management is low at the moment. What are your aspirations for improving this service over the next year?

It’s doing as much as we can to turn it around. I don’t want to put a figure on it, and I would love 100% of customers to be happy, but sometimes things can go wrong. I want to increase the perceptions of the customer and let them see what I see. Complaints are taking too long right now for customers to get an answer, and that’s something I would like to improve. If we can get those complaints seen to quicker and in a good manner, then we can focus on other areas and improve services all around, which is good for all.

From your experience as a customer, what do you think that Accent do well already and what do you think could be improved?

Accent provide good quality homes and their whole values are aligned to serving the customer, but sometimes, it may not feel like that and that’s where us customer champions come in. We can help bridge the gap and give the customer perspective to help shape things going forward. The important thing is getting to a place where every time something does go wrong, it gets corrected in a manner where the customer feels listened to and respected and the outcome is good for all. That’s what’s important for me, and also, it’s important that there is continuous learning from it.

If you were reading this now as a customer and have never engaged with Accent before, what would you say to them?

I would say get involved, give feedback online or speak to your Housing Partner for sure because they are close to you. Do whatever you can to get your point across, because Accent want to listen to you, they want to hear what you think.

Why did you want to become a Customer Champion that focuses on helping to improve how we manage customer complaints?

I run a beauty salon and it’s really important for me that my customer service is spot on and that’s one of the reasons why, I know we can utilise that knowledge to improve things at Accent and do so much better. I’m also an Accent customer so I’ve got first-hand experience of having had complaints with them myself, and going forward, I want to help other customers achieve resolutions. Sometimes it can be simple things that make a big difference, but that’s what’s exciting, whether it be a simple or a more complicated issue, we really can make a difference.

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