Stephanie Edwards

MA, BA (Hons), CMICS

Director of Customer 1st and subject matter expert for customer service in the UK

Stephanie Edwards' qualifications include an MA in Marketing, BA in Business and Administration and a Certificate in Education from the University of London. She is passionate about achieving business success through service excellence, and recognises the importance of developing and empowering staff at the customer interface to ensure customer satisfaction and competitive edge.

Stephanie has worked in higher education for over 15 years, developing customised training programmes for companies in the UK and overseas.  She became a subject matter expert in customer service for the Institute of Customer Service (ICS), and specialises in helping organisations in both public and private sectors, in the UK and globally, to become more customer focused.  She supports organisations in the creation of a customer service culture, developing service standards and a variety of customer service related products at all levels. Stephanie has been proactive in the development of the UK National Occupational Standards (NOS) in Customer Service at 3 levels.

Stephanie wrote The Best Practice Guide for Customer Service Professionals, mapped to the UK  NOS in Customer Service level 2 and The Best Practice Guide for Customer Service Managers, mapped to the UK NOS in Customer Service level 3. The Best Practice Guides have been translated into two other languages for global clients. These books have also been customised for the National Initiative of Service Excellence in Barbados, to be used in conjunction with the delivery of Customer Service vocational qualifications. Stephanie and her team also develop resources for the awarding body LCCI in Singapore.

Stephanie held the role of International Business Advisor for the ICS and supported the Greek Government in the formation of the Hellenic Foundation of Customer Service. She also developed service excellence programmes in Africa (Kenya and Nigeria), Asia, including Singapore, Latin America and the Caribbean. Stephanie wrote successful learning resources for the Institute of Customer Service (UK), ICS ServiceFocus, which consists of two programmes, ICS FirstImpressions and ICS ServiceManagement. She secured a major contract with Accenture (USA), as the UK’s subject matter expert in customer service, assisting the company the development of sixteen modules of e-learning in customer service for the Accenture Supply Chain Academy and six modules for the Accenture Finance Academy. These are adopted by many blue chip companies globally.

Stephanie launched two accredited, on-line, tutor led programmes in Customer Service, the first in the UK, based on the two Best Practice Guides for Professionals and Managers. These programmes have been adopted by MTN Africa, one of the world's largest mobile telecommunications companies.

She worked closely with Professor Robert Johnston at The University of Warwick to initiate the Diploma in Service Leadership, a post graduate programme that is now delivered by Warwick Business School. Stephanie advised The English Tourism Council on its Welcome to Excellence programmes and has developed Welcome Management and Lead, Motivate and Succeed. Currently she is building an online customer service course for the “Welcome to Excellence” suite for use in the tourism sector in the UK.

Stephanie has judged for the National Customer Service Awards at the Grosvenor House Hotel where 34 awards are presented, with an attendance of over 2000, a reminder of the power of celebrating customer service professionalism.  Stephanie has also judged the Customer Service Professional of the Year for the National Tourism Awards. She has written articles for professional magazines and learned journals globally, e.g., The Accenture Supply Chain Academy Blog, My Customer, Customer First and Customer Strategy, and frequently presents at seminars, conferences and exhibitions globally.