Customer service research for the inland revenue

Date of publication: June 15, 1993

Abstract:

Among government departments in the United Kingdom, the Inland Revenue has been among the first to engage in a large scale, multi-stage programme of customer service research in accordance with the Government's Citizen's Charter initiative. This paper maps the progress to date in carrying out this research and in meeting a very complex range of communication challenges, both internal and external, in the context of major structural and organisational change within the Department Adopting a case study format, we examine the difficulties encountered in meeting the broad range of communication requirements, and we cover both the intricate internal management of these issues, as well as the role of the research consultant as a touchstone of non-political objectivity in assisting the communication process. The paper concludes that a close working relationship between the client and the research consultant, including unstinting commitment to the task on both sides, is vital to the success of such an endeavour.

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