I have long suspected that something was up with Contact Islington’s email handling – often when i report something by email i get an automatic repsonse giving me a reference number. This gives me a false sense of security that the problem is being dealt with. But it can take two weeks to get an email telling me what has happened – by which time i have usually called to report it and the problem solved).
I spoke with a call centre person today when i telephoned with a long list of stuff. He confirmed that there had been a surge in the number of emails and they were working with a large backlog. He apologised for this. The best pratcice when you have a problem of this sort (being swamped with demand is a good sort of problem to have) is to acknowlegde to your customers that there are challenges and give them feedback on the best way to handle stuff. While you bring in more resources to handle the problem. They could do this through the auto-repsonse email.
Also some theory i came across years ago on message handling was that the statistcially best way to handle a messgae backlog is to delete it all and focus only on current messages. Otherwise resources getr inappropriately allocated. This is of course hard for a branch of government to do.
So my tip for now would be to telephone 0207 527 2000 and report street problems by phone, not email.
i heard back from cllr george allan – the executive member for customer focus – on 23 october – george said he was not aware of any backlog but would raise it with the executive director for customer focus and notify me of his reply. i haven’t heard anything – perhaps it has got stuck in the backlog……..