CLS Care Services Ltd is a charitable organisation based in Nantwich, specialising in supporting people with dementia and providing care services under two brands: CLS Homes (mainly traditional care homes taken over from local authorities) and Belong, which creates new build community villages offering a range of accommodation, services and facilities, both for residents and members of the public.

Dee Hughes and Lyn Bolton from The Skills Company contacted the company to discuss the possibility of introducing Traineeships and Apprenticeships.  During the meeting, another training need was identified.  The company had done a mystery shopping exercise which highlighted that there were not consistently applied standards for dealing with call handling and customer enquiries, and that this could have a potentially negative effect on the organisation’s reputation, as well as on occupancy and income. 

Following the meeting, Deirdre McManus was brought in to discuss designing some training to address the issues identified.  Deirdre met with key managers at the company, and following their discussion, developed two bespoke training modules to be delivered to managers from the CLS Care homes, and mainly reception staff from Belong Villages.  While there was some common content in the two modules, there was a different emphasis to each course, depending on job roles.

The training covered issues such as:

  • The importance of image
  • The fundamentals of call handling
  • Effective communication skills
  • Identifying and articulating the company’s standards

The courses were delivered to about 45 staff in total at three locations, all of which were on CLS premises.

Feedback from the participants was that they had found the sessions on body language, how to turn negative situations into positives, and the importance of maintaining consistent standards to be the most useful.  100% of those who completed a course evaluation said they would recommend the training to a colleague.

Maha Hamer, CLS Group Marketing Manager, said:

“The training delivered exactly what we were looking for.  We re-created some real life scenarios so that the staff attending could really relate to the content of the training.  It was well delivered, at a good pace, and has helped us establish and reinforce standards of customer care which will enhance our customers’ experience.”