Why can't council staff give their full names?

I HAD reason to telephone a department within Wycombe District Council recently. At the end of the conversation I foolishly asked the council employee their name as one does in case of needing further communication with that person.

I was given the person’s Christian name and when a surname was requested, the reply was that it is policy not to give surnames. When I queried the fact that I could well be asked my surname when contacting the council the answer was, “that’s different”.

I have no complaints with the way I was dealt with during the conversation but find it ridiculous that a full name could not be given. What have these people got to hide? She also told me their ID badges only show a Christian name. So much for freedom of information.

I would rather you just put my Christian name for obvious reasons if you publish this.

Clive, High Wycombe

Comments (1)

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3:02am Sun 2 Sep 12

marlowgirl88 says...

It is the same in many companies. I used to work at the council & now in another public sector job, where we do not give out full names. Although you may be entirely reasonable, like the majority of people, there are a small minority of people who are unhappy with a service, particularly with certain aspects the council deal with. Whilst in the workplace you are somewhat protected, but in this day and age, with facebook etc, people can find out a lot about you, and the last thing you need is someone turning up at your house late at night! (and this has happened on many occasions - at my current work we once had someone turn up at the office threatening to kill an employee). Imagine if that was their house!
I never give my full name, work have strict policies to prevent employees from making contact with customers outside of work, but there is no such rule for customers contacting employees. An audit trail is always available and each member of staff can be traced to the person they deal with. There is no need to give out surnames and no one should feel under pressure to do so.
When I call my car insurance I get through to "Mark" in India. He tells me they are given a list of "English" names to choose from, as their names are too long for us brits to understand. I'm not fussed, as long as the call can be traced. Don't see what the problem is.
It is the same in many companies. I used to work at the council & now in another public sector job, where we do not give out full names. Although you may be entirely reasonable, like the majority of people, there are a small minority of people who are unhappy with a service, particularly with certain aspects the council deal with. Whilst in the workplace you are somewhat protected, but in this day and age, with facebook etc, people can find out a lot about you, and the last thing you need is someone turning up at your house late at night! (and this has happened on many occasions - at my current work we once had someone turn up at the office threatening to kill an employee). Imagine if that was their house! I never give my full name, work have strict policies to prevent employees from making contact with customers outside of work, but there is no such rule for customers contacting employees. An audit trail is always available and each member of staff can be traced to the person they deal with. There is no need to give out surnames and no one should feel under pressure to do so. When I call my car insurance I get through to "Mark" in India. He tells me they are given a list of "English" names to choose from, as their names are too long for us brits to understand. I'm not fussed, as long as the call can be traced. Don't see what the problem is. marlowgirl88
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