It has been a very busy couple of weeks packed with showcasing the successes of many of our member organisations. I attended the launch of the newest ‘Virgin Money Lounge’ in Manchester last week hosted by Chief Executive, Jayne-Anne Gadhia. New CCA members Virgin Money are working hard to present an alternative type of banking with customers encouraged to use the lounge as and when they wish, not only for banking updates and advice but for a quick re-charge with complimentary coffee, power outlets, TV and iPads for internet surfing. We are delighted to have another innovative brand on board and look forward to supporting the implementation of their plans over the coming years.

On Tuesday, I had the great pleasure of presenting Grampian Police with their Global Standard© accreditation after they passed all categories, the first force in Scotland, and the fifth in the UK, to receive this award.  The service centre handles non-emergency calls and has been accredited by CCA for its excellent performance, and is being held up as an example of good practice for a single police force. Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill, who was in attendance said:  "This is a well-deserved accolade for Grampian Police and a strong endorsement of the good work undertaken by the service centre team”. It is inspirational to see the work being undertaken at this service centre where frontline employees have to inspire confidence, whilst dealing with very challenging and complex enquiries. I very much look forward to learning more about how they tackle these issues and how we can best support their practice. 
These examples demonstrate that recognition and reward have never been more important than it is today in our very challenging economic climate.  We are committed to showcasing award winning approaches to customer service – whether that is through organisations achieving and being accredited to CCA Global Standard© or through CCA’s unique peer judged annual Excellence Awards programme. To this end, the CCA team also ran our second Excellence Awards webinar this week, which was very well received. One participant described the benefit to them and their organisation: “We are first time entrants and it provided practical and helpful advice from the perspective of the judges and what they want, and for entrants and how to prepare and present”. While another said “I particularly liked the balance between the two presentations.  They were very clear in their advice.  The different perspectives they presented dovetailed together very well”. 
If you are interested in taking part in our next webinar on the 13th March please contact us. There is also the Showcasing Excellence event on 25th April in Glasgow which, through case study presentations and a step-by-step guide to submitting a winning award entry, will offer delegates a unique opportunity to learn from outstanding examples of innovation and best practice.