Rising talent in Facilities Management
13 October 2014
Last year, Edge Hill University entered and won in the BIFM Awards in-house client team category for its programme of treating students as customers while adopting a 'commercial market approach to customer service'.
And the University is now a double winner, winning the Excellence in Customer Service award for its 'Welcome Sunday' initiative - what it describes as the "biggest day of the FM and Edge Hill calendar". Welcome Sunday takes place at the end of September, and is a co-ordinated programme of activities across the campus to welcome new residential students into their halls of residence, complete their course enrolment and deal with any other administrative requirements.
Preparation for Welcome Sunday, is led by Edge Hill's FM senior management team, revolves around three areas: residential accommodation preparation, event planning and event operations on the day.
Planning begins in April, five months ahead of the September induction day. The FM team liaises with a number of internal departments, such as academic registry, in order to understand any logistical requirements.
The FM team manages temporary signage, traffic flow and transport links, ensuring a smooth transition for new students and families accompanying them, using two-way radios to improve communication across the campus. After analysing customer feedback, the team also mapped the 'customer journey', making the requirements for the students on the day simple to understand.
FM staff are placed at key locations across the campus, and a 'roving trouble-shooter' is on call to assist with more complex enquiries.
Customer service is monitored and reviewed through Edge Hill's 'FM Vision 2015'. All staff objectives are related to the vision, which includes providing "consistently high-quality support services and facilities that are comparable to a three or four-star hotel".