Supporting your customers

With over 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK, along with their affected family and friends, you may need additional guidance to ensure your vulnerable customers are provided with the support they need.

Dementia UK can help ensure that:
  • Your staff feel empowered to work confidently with customers affected by dementia, including guidance for front line staff in branches, stores or call centres

For example, our Clinical Services Team has provided guidance for Central England Co-operative store staff in supporting people with dementia and other vulnerable customers.

We collaborated with Dementia UK to create a user-friendly leaflet to support our retail colleagues when interacting with customers or colleagues living with dementia.  It includes what to look out for and tips on communication.  It also includes a very valuable section on safeguarding.  Colleagues are encouraged to be vigilant in recognising signs a person may be being taken advantage of.  These have been circulated to all stores and can be made available to other retailers. Hannah Gallimore, Corporate Responsibility Manager at Central England Co-operative

  • Your staff understand the impact that dementia and caring responsibilities can have on your customer journeys

For example, our specialist dementia nurses deliver awareness sessions to build an understanding of dementia, how it can affect everyday life and your customer journeys.

I thought the awareness session was brilliant. It helped bring vulnerability to life for our customer contact agents and claims adjusters who are talking to potential vulnerable customers on a regular basis. The session outlined how our agents and adjusters could adapt their approach when talking to potential vulnerable customers and also emphasized that it is not just those who live with dementia that are vulnerable but also those who care for them. A very worthwhile, thought provoking session. Thanks to all at Dementia UK. – Employee at AIG

  • Your processes take into account the needs of customers affected by dementia

For example, Dementia UK is working with DHL Patient Transport Services on a number of initiatives, which aim to better support the people with dementia that ambulance drivers and call-centre staff work with. These initiatives include:

  • developing staff training modules
  • producing key information ‘cards’ that will be kept in the ambulances for staff to use whilst out undertaking their roles
  • looking at ways to improve the travel experience for patients

We know that attending hospital can be a stressful event for people with dementia and their carers. That is why we are pleased to be working with DHL to support better transport journeys. DHL Patient Transport Services are taking a thoughtful approach to better serve their customers and it is great to play our part in their development. Paul Edwards, Director of Clinical Services at Dementia UK

  • Your customer environments e.g. the layout of a store are accessible and inclusive

For example, Central England Co-operative has demonstrated its commitment to helping those affected by dementia by piloting relaxed checkout lanes for customers who need extra time at the till.

Going through a shop checkout can be a fast, noisy experience, which can be quite unsettling for someone living with dementia. The extra time checkout is an excellent initiative to make people with dementia feel welcome and respected, while helping them to live fulfilling, independent lives. Paul Edwards, Director of Clinical Services at Dementia UK

As another example, our Clinical Services team has advised Assura on the design of a new primary care centre for Cinderford in Gloucestershire, to help make sure the new building is easy to get around, comfortable to spend time in and a more inclusive environment for people living with dementia and their families:

Being able to draw on the wealth of experience within Dementia UK to help us with this milestone project has been invaluable –  everyone involved is looking forward to seeing the design in action for patients and families when the centre opens. – Claire Rick, Head of Public Affairs, Assura

If you are interested in hearing more about the bespoke support we can offer, please get in touch today on 020 8036 5407 or at corporate.partnerships@dementiauk.org.