Athens, Ga. – The University of Georgia has received several awards for outstanding customer service from the Governor’s Office of Customer Service and the University System of Georgia Chancellor’s Customer Service Awards program.
UGA Parking Services was honored in the category of Team Excellence by Gov. Sonny Perdue on Oct. 8 and by Chancellor Errol B. Davis, Jr. on Oct. 14 during the Board of Regents meeting. Additional honors from the chancellor went to Shawn Ellis of UGA Enterprise Information Technology Services and to the university as a whole.
Parking services was one of only 16 individuals or teams out of 636 nominations recognized by the governor for excellence in customer service. UGA was the only university to win a governor’s award. Parking services also received a gold medal in the team category from the chancellor for the re-engineering of the traffic flow in the North Campus parking deck. Michael Chalker, a member of the parking services team, proposed completely reversing the traffic flow in the deck to reduce exit time and the potential for collisions.
The re-engineering of the North Campus parking deck was one of many goals included in parking services’ plan for better customer service. The strategic plan and the implementation of 114 of 154 goals earned the department an honorable mention for improvement initiatives from the chancellor.
Shawn Ellis, EITS director of the client services, was recognized with an honorable mention in the category Outstanding Customer Service Leadership. Ellis instituted a “problem management” process to ascertain and address recurring network and technology problems, developed metrics for the EITS Help Desk, created a student laptop support program, re-aligned resources to provide more network support to students, and combined the student and faculty/staff help desks to create a consistent, single point of contact for the EITS customers.
These collective awards, coupled with the numerous service improvements already underway on campus aimed at fostering a culture of customer service excellence, earned the university a bronze award for Institution of the Year in the university system.
Several UGA employees were part of the University System of Georgia team who won the gold for Excellence of the Year award for GALILEO, Georgia’s Virtual Library. Team members from UGA included: Brad Baxter, senior GALILEO programmer; Mike Thomas, GALILEO programmer; Phil Fitzpatrick, senior systems administrator and Tim Peacock, department head and GALILEO technical coordinator.
“To me, it’s always been essential that anyone who works in a public service environment should have a customer service focus,” said Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration Tim Burgess. “On a university campus, it all revolves around the students. We need to improve our operations so that we better support their overall learning experience. These honors indicate that we are succeeding in that effort.”
More than 120 nominations for the chancellor’s awards were submitted for individuals, teams and institutions that have demonstrated exemplary service to their customers over the last year.