By Christie Robinson, CRE Specialist, Mojave Desert Air Quality Management District
In today’s economic climate, customer service can mean the difference between success and failure for some businesses and organizations. In January of this year, the Mojave Desert Air Quality Management District–the local air quality agency for San Bernardino County’s High Desert and Riverside County’s Palo Verde Valley–initiated a Customer Service Satisfaction Survey in an effort to provide the MDAQMD Executive Board with insights on how well staff is meeting the needs of regulated business while issuing permits, inspecting facilities and responding to questions about air quality rules and regulations.
The MDAQMD’s last Customer Service survey– which was conducted in 1999–produced 26 responses. The 2016 survey produced a total of 60 responses from local industry. More than 650 postcards announcing the survey were distributed using direct mail and e-mails to permittees and other interested parties between January 11, 2016 and March 1, 2016.
The MDAQMD’s Customer Service Satisfaction Survey was designed using Survey Monkey and posted to the district’s website. The questionnaire was designed to elicit respondents’ opinions on a variety of district services, as well gauge how well the district is performing and how it can improve.
The survey consisted of 15 rating scale questions, ranging from ease of contacting the district, technical and rule support, and ease of applying for a permit. Respondents were asked to provide a rating for each topic on a scale between “poor” and “excellent,” or N/A for not applicable. Below are some of the survey’s findings: • More than 65% of respondents rated the ease of reaching District staff by phone or e-mail as “excellent.”
- Accuracy of service/information provided by permitting staff was rated “excellent” by more than 64%.
- Courtesy and professionalism of compliance staff in conducting facility inspections was rated “excellent” by almost 72%.
- Timeliness of permitting or compliance staff in conducting facility inspections was rated “excellent” by more than 60%.
- Permitting and compliance staff knowledge of technical issues and applicable regulations was rated “excellent” by almost 72%.
- Almost 60% of participants rated the level of service provided by the MDAQMD compared to other California air districts as “excellent.”
- Nearly 85% of the respondents rated their overall satisfaction with ease of applying for a permit or authority to construct between “excellent” and “good.”
Several questions on the survey asked for comments; a sampling is provided below:
- “Inspectors have been approachable, knowledgeable, and reachable.”
- “Work well with the staff. The staff is always willing to meet in person to discuss issues.”
- “The smoothest permitting for any air district in California. Well done!”
- “MDAQMD personnel have always demonstrated a high degree of professionalism, knowledge, and interest in helping with issues regarding compliance.”
According to Eldon Heaston, MDAQMD Executive Director, “The survey’s results will help the District construct a road map for implementing improvements and to continue providing optimum services to the regulated community in the near future.”
The MDAQMD is responsible for regulating stationary air pollution sources and implementing state and federal air quality rules and regulations within its 20,000 square mile jurisdiction, which is home to more than 550,000 residents. The MDAQMD has garnered a reputation as one of the most responsive and business-friendly air districts in California.
To find out how doing business within the MDAQMD could be good for your business, call 760.245.1661 or visit us online at www.mdaqmd.ca.gov today!