ascot durning libraryThe Ascot Durning Library (in upper Ascot High Street) SL5 7JF,  is now  open on Sundays !

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More customer services to be available at libraries

RBWM Residents will soon be able to access more customer services at borough libraries and at a time when most convenient to them.

A proposal to modernise customer and library services approved at last night’s cabinet will enable residents to access services that answer council tax and other queries, pay bills and renew Advantage Cards and bus passes.

The functions which will form part of a new Customer Experience team are: libraries, customer services, facilities management, specialised business support, customer feedback (including comments, compliments and complaints) and culture and heritage (including reading and learning events, arts and museums) with, by appointment, registration services (births, marriages and deaths) and housing options advice.

This will be introduced in two phases. From July 2017 customer services including housing options, culture, libraries and the registration service will be available in new ‘customer service hubs’ created initially at Maidenhead, Ascot and Windsor libraries. This is phase one.

This means the majority of council services will be available to residents seven days a week in line with library opening hours.

Residents will be able to go to one of the three main sites for all kinds of queries, from missed bins to council tax.

Our libraries will still continue to deliver the professional, wide-ranging and responsive services that they currently do.

Phase two will involve redesigning the existing telephone contact centre to create a modern customer-facing service based on good practice and benchmarking across the country.

Cllr Samantha Rayner, lead member for culture and communities, said: “This is a very exciting project and a chance to provide more services closer to where residents live.

“We want to make it as easy as possible for people to get a quick answer to a question they may have about a bill or service and at the same time that they are using our fantastic library facilities.”

The aim is to create one-stop-shops that cover a wide range of resident’s needs, and at times to suit all types of people and not the usual 9-5. Our libraries have longer opening hours than the Town Hall, Maidenhead and York House Windsor currently do, so people can get customer service on council queries at times that previously they were not able to.   

As part of this project the range of 24/7 digital services and telephone services will also be extended.   

Cllr Geoff Hill, lead member for customer and business services, added: “In this rapidly moving digital age we want to keep up with new technologies and give people the opportunity to choose a digital option that’s more convenient and at a time that suits them. Many of us have busy lives, which make it harder to come into Windsor or Maidenhead during the day to speak to a member of staff. 

“We will of course always have the other channels available for people who want to speak to a person face to face. I am very much looking forward to seeing the project unfold and am sure it will enhance and extend our existing customer services.”       

As part of a separate pilot the council is currently trialling customer services in Eton Wick Library every Thursday from 10-1pm and 2-4.30pm to see how it is received and if we can improve it further.