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WBBA PR photo with finalistsCustomer service scaled even greater heights at Mercedes-Benz of Newbury when it played host to finalists from next month’s West Berkshire Business Awards (WBBA).

The London Road Retailer is sponsoring the Mercedes-Benz of Newbury Customer Care Award and welcomed representatives from the trio of companies competing for the title which will be announced at an awards dinner, which takes place at Newbury Racecourse on Friday 16th October.

Dozens of local firms entered the category with the Vici Language Company, We Love Pets and Nolan Osteopathy going head-to-head for the award after being chosen from a shortlist of six organisations.

Formed in 2008, the Vici Language Company teaches 12 modern languages to a client base of more than 220 people ranging from those wanting to learn for their own personal development or as a pastime to owners of properties overseas and foreign nationals who have moved to the Newbury area to work. It also runs an online language platform which is utilised by clients living as far afield as France and Spain.

“Customer service is something that we take very seriously from the moment that an enquiry is received,” said Managing Director Nathalie Danon-Kerr. “Being so focused on our students and the day-to-day running of the business, it is amazing to receive this outside recognition that we are doing a fantastic job in the way that we look after our clients.”

Having started as a dog-walking service in Hungerford in 2007, We Love Pets really is literally taking the lead when it comes to customer care. According to Julie Turner, who founded the business with her sister Joanne Tomlinson, it has been paramount in the company’s success that now sees it operating eight franchises, offering a wider range of services including pet-sitting, boarding and daycare and being named as a finalist in the WBBA Small Business category too.

“Our customers mean so much to us as without them we wouldn’t have a business,” explained Julie. “Good communication is an integral part of our customer service philosophy, from providing clients with a dedicated point-of-contact, notes after walks and posting photos on facebook so they can see how their pets are being looked after in our care.”

A back-to-basics approach has worked wonders for Maria Nolan in building her osteopathy business, Nolan Osteopathy, which is also bidding to win the WBBA Start-up Award. After launching just over a year ago, Nolan Osteopathy has seen rapid growth across its two practices in Henley and Midgham, with Maria’s husband, Fergus, recently coming on board to help manage this growth and further expansion could soon follow.

“We have set out to look after our clients as we would want to be looked after ourselves and to do the simple things really well so services such as sending text reminders to confirm upcoming appointments, providing copies of exercise plans for people to follow, following up after appointments to monitor progress and even offering card payment facilities have all been well received,” said Maria. “As a relatively new company, we are delighted to have been selected as one of the finalists for the customer care award and it will be an incredible honour to win.”

After successfully coming through the application stage, the three companies progressed to the final after being interviewed by Wesley Cole, Mercedes-Benz of Newbury’s Head of Business, and his colleague, Jessica Smith, who is undertaking an apprenticeship in customer service with the Retailer.

“Customer service is something that we are very passionate about as a business and the same was evident with each of the three finalists,” added Wesley. “All have demonstrated their commitment to putting their customers first and a culture and proactivity to delivering the highest standards of customer care.

“Each of these companies is deserving of being in the final three for the Mercedes-Benz of Newbury Customer Care Award and it will be a very tough decision indeed to choose the overall winner.”

Wish us luck on 16 October! 

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