Run by members for members
But what does that mean in practice? Firstly our board includes members - people like you running their own businesses . Secondly, our committees and council are all owners/staff at member businesses. They have a remit to hold us to account. Thirdly, all our staff - from our accountants to our receptionists are encouraged to visit members. Last but not least we also survey members for their views.
We run quite a few surveys it has to be said. But they're genuinely essential to us and we do try to manage the number we send. We don't survey for the sake of it.
Weekly - we survey every tenth person on our database. There are just two questions: a satisfaction score out of ten, and a comment. Scores are displayed every week in our offices, and staff are tasked with fixing causes of disatisfaction.
Quarterly - we survey the main contact at half our member businesses. This is usually a five to seven minute survey covering the state of trade, and issues of interest to the industry. Its results go into producing our quarterly Market Update for members.
Yearly - we commission a research agency to interview one in ten of our members over the 'phone. It takes about fifteen minutes and goes into detailed feedback on the use and quality of what HTA does. We also run annual surveys on satisfaction with our gift voucher and gift card products, and National Plant Show. Finally, when something major like our stance on Brexit comes up, we consult members through a survey
How we use the surveys
We use your feedback to change what we do. Sometimes we use it to change what government does too. As a result of your feedback we've done the following (and more besides that we can't put onto a web site):
- Changed policy on National Garden Gift Card to let members sell an undenominated version
- Changed the supplier of our payment card processing service to get better rates and service
- Developed eLearning materials so that smaller businesses who can't easily send staff out of the office have a staff training option
- Followed up with dozens of members who've used the weekly survey to highlight a problem
- Simplified the structure of our website (an ongoing task!)
Your time's precious, and we don't ask for it without thinking carefully first. We hope this gives you an idea about how we use your feedback, and how it's part of getting all our staff to focus on you, our members. If you want to know more about our surveys, visits, board or just want to make a suggestion you can email us: firstname.lastname@example.org