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1st Touch CEO Robert Dent

we were in a strong position to put together a consortium of tightly integrated solutions

Family-owned construction, civil engineering and property services business Osborne was the very proud recipient of the Institute of Customer Services Best Application of Technology Award, presented 26th February 2013.

To win the award Osborne beat stiff competition to win which included entries from: Prudential, British Gas Electrical Services, RBS and Barclays. Feedback from the judges cited an impressive submission which gave great examples of off the shelf solutions with proven increased efficiency.

Osborne has an embedded ethos of customer service, which is particularly important within the Property Services sector where repairs, maintenance and planned works are carried out for social housing providers. High levels of customer satisfaction are a requirement of the contracts carried out and one important element of its successful activity is the result of collaboration between Osborne and a consortium of IT partners led by mobile technology market leader 1st Touch ( and including AccuServe, Opti-Time and Keyfax.The new system, combining technology from the consortium, has already been installed on the 15 year Ascham Homes contract.

Nick Sterling, Managing Director of Osborne’s Property Services team, said: “Maintenance and repairs work requires a strong customer services ethic, backed up by the technology and logistics to deliver it effectively. We are the only company from the social housing sector to be recognised at these awards and are pleased to have stood up to scrutiny against much bigger companies.

“But more important to us is the recognition of our customers themselves. We are pleased to report that as a result of this new way of working our customer satisfaction levels have reached an all-time high, approaching 100%.”

Jo Causon chief executive Institute of Customer Service said; “The Awards have become an integral part of the business calendar. It is important to showcase and celebrate those who have shown that their organisation is committed to their customers at the very highest level. Osborne is differentiating through service, placing customers at the heart of their business strategy and securing a bright future for their employees by doing so.”

Commenting on the award Robert Dent CEO of 1st Touch added; “Osborne property services team’s approach to customer service is widely respected in the industry. Having put together an IT consortium to support its work, we were especially delighted that the Institute of Customer Service’s Award recognised the contribution that the technology investment had played in Osborne increasing its already-high customer service standards.

“Osborne has a well-deserved reputation for setting high standards in the construction industry and its approach to investing heavily in quality and customer satisfaction meant that it needed an IT system configurable enough to meet these high levels of quality in all respects. It also needed a supply side alternative capable of combining and managing a best of breed solution and one that could move swiftly to a managed service delivery. As we have built strong partnerships with market leading organisations such as AccuServ for contract management, Xmbrace for scheduling and Omfax for diagnostics, to deliver complete IT solutions in the UK social housing market, we were in a strong position to put together a consortium of tightly integrated solutions that deliver what Osborne required. As outsourcing becomes more prevalent it’s imperative that the contractors use the best technology in order to deliver better and more economical services for repairs and maintenance to social housing providers. Mobile plays a big part in this because they can manage their workforces so much better.”


About Osborne:

Osborne is one of the UK's leading family-owned construction, civil engineering and property services businesses, with expertise in delivering projects for our clients in affordable and social housing, civic buildings & amenities, commercial property, education, healthcare and transport (including airports, highways and rail). Founded in 1966 by civil engineer Geoffrey Osborne, it employs over 900 people, has eight offices in the southern half of the UK and turned over £311 million in its last financial year.

About the Institute of Customer Service

The Institute of Customer Service is the professional body for customer service delivering tangible benefit to organisations and individuals so that our customers can improve their customers’ experience and their own business performance.

The Institute is a membership body with a community of over 400 organisational members – from the private, public and third sectors – and over 3,000 individual memberships.

For more information about the Institute of Customer Service go to:

About the UK Customer Satisfaction Awards

Entry to the UK Customer Satisfaction Awards is free and there are eleven award categories. Award submissions are scored against pre-set criteria by a panel of industry experts.

Two UKCSI Awards are presented to organisations who perform well in the Institute’s UK Customer Satisfaction Index.

The UK Customer Satisfaction Index (UKCSI) is the national measure of customer satisfaction, published by the Institute of Customer Service. The Institute launched the UKCSI in 2007 and publishes it every 6 months.

The UKCSI is based on 26,000 consumer responses, across 13 business sectors (Automotive; Finance (banks and building societies); Finance (insurance); Leisure; Public sector (local); Public sector (national); Retail (food); Retail (non-food); Services; Telecommunications; Tourism; Transport; Utilities.

UKCSI responses are gathered from a geographically and demographically representative sample of UK adults. Data is collected from approximately 160 private sector organisations with a market share sizeable enough to register in the survey, as well as key organisations in local and national public sectors.

Customers are asked to rate organisations on key attributes of customer service including professionalism, quality & efficiency, ease of doing business, problem-solving, timeliness, and the way complaints are handled.
Awards finalists are assessed by an independent group of judges selected for their business knowledge and acumen.

The six highest scoring entrants in each award category are invited along to the awards evening.

For more information about the UK Customer Satisfaction Awards or the Institute of Customer Service contact Brian Weston, director of marketing and communications – Tel: 01206 216180 or 07585 603446

13 awards were presented in the following categories:

Barclays Customer Focus Award – SME: iNet Telecoms (Voipfone)
Objective HR Employee Engagement Strategy of the Year: UKFast
Quality Service Provider of the Year: Denplan
The Leadership Factor Best Customer Satisfaction Strategy Award: Boots UK
NICE Best Application of Technology Award: Osborne
Sitel Customer Commitment Award: Simplyhealth
Customer Feedback Strategy Award: Costa Coffee
Marks and Spencer Customer Satisfaction Innovation of the Year: Asda
ABa Quality Monitoring Customer Focus Award – Large Enterprise: Boots UK
Best Return on Customer Service Investment Award: LV=
The Underfloor Heating Store Customer Service Leadership Award: David Jewell, business development director, Bottomline Technologies
UKCSI Award Best in UK: ASOS
UKCSI Award Most Improved: Pontins

A full list of the finalists in all categories can be found at

About 1st Touch (

Southampton based 1st Touch, a subsidiary of Aareon AG (, has enabled dozens of field workforce-based organisations to embrace new mobile technologies and so achieve significant savings, greater productivity and more cost-effective use of resources. 1st Touch Mobile delivers clear and unique benefits: - Reduced costs to organisations because airtime is minimised and the system is always available with or without airtime. - Flexibility through simple customer control over forms creation and amendment. - Integration to multiple back office and other enterprise software applications, so that data is entered only once.

With its widely acclaimed mobile technology, 1st Touch has a clear focus on the Social Housing and Local Government markets. Many social housing providers and local authorities, at large, now benefit from the fast and tangible, best of breed benefits that 1st Touch mobile technology delivers to the enterprise.

To date, over 50% of the social housing market, which has deployed mobile technology, has chosen to implement 1st Touch. In local government, 1st Touch has already been adopted for a wide range of mobile workforce uses. Ready to use applications for local authority organisations include: Public Buildings, Highways/Street Services, Environmental/Waste Management, Revenues and Benefits, together with Planning Control and Trading Standards.

1st Touch software is available on a wide variety of platforms including: Windows Mobile, Apple and Android.

For further information, please contact:

Mim Claridge
1st Touch
02380 111206.


Leigh Richards
The Right Image PR & Marketing Group
07758 372527

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of Osborne in the following categories: Environment & Nature, Business & Finance, Travel, Education & Human Resources, Media & Marketing, Farming & Animals, Retail & Fashion, Public Sector, Third Sector & Legal, Manufacturing, Engineering & Energy, Computing & Telecoms, Transport & Logistics, Construction & Property, for more information visit