3 Contribute to administering and promoting business information services


This is about handling the day-to-day administration that is needed to enable an effective business information service to be provided to clients. This includes maintaining diaries, records of client contacts and follow-up. It also includes organising and cataloguing materials, and administering activities designed to promote and provide business support services and presenting the service.

What you need to show

You must make sure that your practice meets the following requirements.

a      Set-up and up-date client records in line with relevant legal requirements and organisation guidelines.

b      Maintain complete, accurate and up-to-date records of client contacts and follow up.

c      Use diary systems effectively to plan and manage your own and other colleague’s activities to meet deadlines.

d      Make sure that the necessary materials are available for the business information service to operate on a day-to-day basis.

e      Prepare and supply materials needed to inform clients and others about the business support services offered by your organisation.

f      Make sure that materials are organised in a way that that helps people access what they need.

g      Plan and organise meetings or events that contribute to promoting and providing business support services.

h      Contribute to presenting the business support service in a way that clearly explains and effectively promotes the benefits and activities offered.

i       Make sure that your activities support and promote effective customer service.


What you need to know and understand

You need to know, understand and be able to apply each of the following.

Communication and interpersonal skills

1      How to listen and question.

2      How to summarise and exchange information.

3      How to interview, review and decide on needs.

4      How to negotiate, challenge and deal with difficulties.

5      Your colleagues’ and contacts’ interests, skills and preferred ways of working with you.

Client records

6      What and when information is recorded about client contacts and follow up.

7      How to set-up, maintain and monitor records using your organisation’s client relationship management (CRM) system.

8      The legislation and organisational guidelines relevant to client records (such as about data protection, freedom of information, confidentiality).

Diary systems

9      Why it is important to use diary systems to plan and co-ordinate activities and resources.

10   How to make diary entries using your organisation’s diary system.

11   How to prioritise and balance competing requirements and resources.

12   How to negotiate and agree any changes to arrangements and make sure that all those involved have been informed.

13   The types of security and confidentiality issues relevant to diary systems and how to manage them.


14   What materials are needed by the service on a day-to-day basis and how they are organised (eg stationery, publicity materials or information packs).

15   How materials are procured within the available budget.

16   The different types of information materials that need to be organised.

17   Why it is important to store information securely.

18   How to layout and structure information materials so that they can be accessed easily by users.

19   How to organise and present indexes or catalogues so that users can easily locate information materials.

20   How to use computer and machine-based information storage systems.

21   How to handle information materials in line with health and safety guidelines.

Meetings or events

22   The purpose and resources needed in advance and on the day (such as budget, venue, equipment, catering, information).

23   The role and responsibilities of those involved, including any health, safety and security requirements that need to be taken into account.

24   Who will attend, when and how they will be invited, and any special requirements they may have.

25   How to present business support services effectively to different audiences.

26   The types of problems that may occur during the event or meeting and how to solve these.

27   Whether any records will be kept or circulated afterwards, by whom and how.

Customer service

28   What is meant by the term ‘customer’ and who the customers are for your team and organisation.

29   Why effective and efficient customer service, and continuous improvement, is important.

30   The quality standards that apply to customer service.

31   How to set and meet timescales and quality standards for your customers.

32   Why it is important to monitor customer satisfaction and how to do so.

33   The types of problems that customers may experience and how to solve them.

Personal behaviours

You need to show the following behaviours.

34   Gain respect by operating in a professional and credible manner IiP2.1

35   Engender co-operation by considering the perspective of others IiP2.2

36   Handle disagreements or resistance constructively and fairly IiP2.3

37   Confidence about your own knowledge and ability IiP2.4

38   Think strategically, take a holistic view of the way forward IiP3.1

39   Strive to add value by achieving results in the best way IiP7.1

40   Develop yourself to improve performance IiP7.2

41   Remain positive and maintain effort despite setbacks, changes or ambiguities IiP7.3

42   Achieve results through the guided actions of others IiP7.4

43   Prioritise and schedule to ensure optimum use of time and resource IiP5.2

44   Be sufficiently organised and flexible to switch between several ongoing tasks IiP5.3

45   Recognise when plans need to be adapted and act accordingly IiP5.4

46   Invite a two-way exchange of information and feedback with others IiP6.3


Links to other National Occupational Standards

There are other NOS suites which you may want to refer to if you would like to develop your knowledge and abilities to a greater depth in certain topics covered by the Business Information standards. For this unit they are:

Council for Administration Business Administration units:

105 Store and retrieve information

204 Manage diary systems

209 Store, retrieve and archive information

211 Organise and support meetings

224 Produce documents

304 Procure products and services

311 Plan, organise and support meetings

313 Organise and coordinate events

412 Chair meetings

Institute of Customer Service Customer Service units:

1 Prepare yourself to deliver good customer service

2a Maintain a positive and customer-friendly attitude

2b Adapt your behaviour to make a good customer service impression

4 Do your job in a customer-friendly way

5 Provide customer service within the rules

6 Recognise and deal with customer queries, requests and problems

7 Understand customer service to improve service delivery

8 Know the rules to follow when developing customer service

9 Give customers a positive impression of yourself and your organisation

12 Live up to the customer service promise

13 Make customer service personal

21 Deliver reliable customer service

22 Deliver customer service on your customer’s premises

29 Evaluate the quality of customer service

30 Build and maintain effective customer relations

37 Support customer service improvements

Those in a supervisory role may wish to refer to the Managements Standards Centre Management and Leadership units:

D11. Lead meetings

D12. Participate in meetings

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