Paul AinsworthPaul AinsworthApril 15, 2019


UK Complaint Handling Awards winner Firstsource is creating up to 450 new jobs at a new £1 million base in Northern Ireland.

The call centre firm – which was named Overall Winner at the UKCHAs in March after winning Gold in the event’s Customer Insight Strategy category – currently employs around 2,000 staff in Belfast and Derry, and the new base in Belfast city centre will see new roles in customer service, human resources, IT, and general management.

Sean Canning, Chief Operational Officer for Customer Management at Firstsource Solutions said the new hub could help bring footfall back to Belfast city centre after a year that saw numbers plummet due to a devastating fire at one of the area’s most iconic buildings.

A blaze at the Bank Building – home to retail giant Primark – last August saw a section of Belfast’s main shopping thoroughfare closed for several months over fears the shell of the gutted building could collapse.

“Our new location at Olive Tree House is a welcome addition to a part of the city where commercial businesses have struggled in recent months due to the well-publicised fire at Primark,” Mr Canning said.

“We are looking forward to bringing footfall back into this area and supporting local businesses further. Belfast is a vibrant city and Firstsource is making an important contribution to its future through our innovation and digital capabilities as we help businesses advance Customer Experience through automation, analytics and process improvements.

“This significant investment will enable us to support and upskill local talent, offer career progression, support the local economy, win new business and continue to support existing clients with world class customer management.”

2018 also saw Firstsource enjoy victory at the UK Customer Experience Awards for the fourth year in a row. The firm won in two categories: Best Employee Engagement – Programme or Transformation category, and Transforming the Customer Experience.



Paul AinsworthPaul AinsworthMarch 11, 2019


The 2019 UK Complaint Handling Awards have taken place in London, celebrating the people and  initiatives behind some of the best customer service operations in Britain.

Hosted by Awards International – holders of an Independent Awards Standards Council Gold Trust Mark – the event saw hundreds gather at the Park Plaza Riverbank hotel last Friday, when teams of finalists made presentations to an expert panel of judges throughout the day.

Finalists were competing to secure Gold and Silver titles across 18 categories, with one Overall Winner also named for their high score at the event, which this year was sponsored by Aptean and Ecosheme, and partnered by Resolver, Henley Business School’s Henley Centre for Customer Management, and The Malcolm McDonald Academy.

Following a gala lunch, the 2019 Overall Winner title was awarded to outsourcing services firm Firstsource, which claimed Gold in the Customer Insight Strategy category. The victory built on the success of the company in last year’s awards, when along with mobile network giffgaff it won Best Personal Entertainment & Telecoms.

Other big winners this year were banking giants HSBC, which won an incredible four Gold category titles, and United Utilities, which won three Gold titles, including the highly coveted Complaint Handling Leader of the Year award for their Head of Service Recovery, Sally Ainsworth.

The 2019 roll of honour also included Wessex Water in partnership with The First Word, which won in the Best Complaint Handling Training category; One Vision Housing, which claimed Gold for Best Use of Customers’ Insight and Feedback; and Capita, whose team walked away with the Customer Relations & Remediation award.

Speaking afterwards, Awards International CEO Neil Skehel said: “What an event this has been – we are incredibly fortunate to have such a vantage point on the high standard of complaint handling services in the UK.

“So many organisations are ensuring they have a robust complaints procedure at the heart of their structure, and these awards not only celebrate the best initiatives behind that, but they also allow representatives from all of these wonderful companies to come together and inspire each other, share best practice, and ensure complaint handling continues to go from strength to strength and remains central to a quality service.”

“On behalf of Awards International I would like to offer a huge congratulations to all of our winners, and I want to thank all of our finalists for coming and competing in what is now one of the most important events in the UK’s customer service calendar.”






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