Thursday, November 16, 2023
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
Council strives to serve the needs and interests of our community so effective customer service is an important means of engaging with residents, understanding their concerns, and addressing their issues.
This week we meet Whitsunday Regional Council’s Manager Customer Service, Shane Douglas.
“Dougo” as he is better known to his friends has been with Council for seven years and had previously worked in management positions across a variety of backgrounds for 22 years.
In his words, “I had a desire to give back to my community and being a part of grassroots local government allows me to do that every day”.
“My ambitions were to ensure open and honest communication with residents was treated as a priority because providing information about council activities, decisions, and initiatives through exceptional customer service helps ensure transparency and accountability. Helping customers get from reporting an issue to resolving it and removing the need for service all together is what great Customer Service is all about.”
“Customer service is the bridge that connects Council to its community. My role includes overseeing our Customer Service counters in Cannonvale, Proserpine, Bowen and Collinsville, along with our afterhours call centre and online services,” he said.
Whitsunday Regional Council received 52,361 calls, 23,611 visitors to our branches and logged 23,501 requests for service last year. With the push for digital services across all sectors, WRC’s next stage is to reduce cost through emerging digital services while balancing the need to remain accessible to all our residents.
Shane said that while his role can be challenging it is also rewarding as he gets to lead a fantastic team and has been sought after as guest speaker at customer service conferences in Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, and New Zealand.
“Customer service is not just about providing information or resolving issues; it's about building trust, and ultimately creating a community where residents feel heard, valued, and well-served.”
In his spare time, ‘Dougo’ can be seen on the cricket field and coaching junior Rugby League and Union teams or out on the water fishing and crabbing.