Fire brigade delivers top customer service to West Yorkshire

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) has achieved the coveted Customer Service Excellence (CSE) standard in recognition of the first class provision we offer the county.

The Service was commended for recognition nationally as a good practice example in many areas and was congratulated on its “innovative approaches”.

Our employees were hailed as “enthusiastic, well-motivated and dedicated members of staff”.

Following the thorough assessment in October, WYFRS achieved ‘Full Compliance’ against all 57 criteria including 12 ‘Compliance Plus’ awards – this was a further improvement on last year’s assessment.

Areas assessed included:

  • Customer Insight
  • The Culture of the Organisation
  • Information and Access
  • Delivery
  • Timeliness and Quality of Service

The Auditor commented: “An excellent Service and recognised nationally as a good practice example in many areas with innovative approaches to the use of databases and technology to design and test operational services, community fire safety work and information governance.

“More recently, the Service has moved towards co-working with other ‘blue-light’ services on a range of common interests and this has been helped by co-locating fire and rescue resources with those of the police and ambulance services.

“As well as efficiencies, the result at one station visited is a proposal for police officers to undertake preliminary Home Fire Safety Checks referring onwards in appropriate cases.

“This was a professionally presented application making the most of technology and supported by evidence from enthusiastic, well-motivated and dedicated members of staff and many examples of providing excellent customer service.”

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Dave Walton, Director of Service Delivery, said: “We are delighted to receive such a glowing report but this will not mean that we will rest on our laurels.

“We will strive as ever to improve the service we provide even more, as is our duty to the public tax payer.”

CSE tests in great depth areas that research has indicated are priorities for customers, with particular focus on delivery, timeliness, information, professionalism and staff attitude.

CSE was phased in in 2009 to replace the Charter Mark Standard, which is the Government’s national standard of customer service excellence for organisations delivering public services.

WYFRS serves a population of more than 2.2 million people spread over an area of almost 800 square miles.

The Service employs 1,700 people comprising full and part-time firefighters, control centre staff and support staff.

The report results were presented to the full West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Authority Meeting today and the summary can be viewed on our website here.