The Management Today/Unisys 1997 Service Excellence Awards were presented at a lunch on 30 September at the House of Commons. Now in their third year the Awards have already become some of the most coveted in British business. Among the over 140 guests who attended the lunch were the Rt Hon Lord Barnet of Heywood and Royton, George Cox, chief executive of Unisys' information service group, Europe, Dominic Mills, editorial director of Management Today and, guest of honour, the Rt Hon. Michael Heseltine, MP.
In his keynote speech at the lunch Heseltine highlighted the importance of the service sector and emphasised the role the Awards had to play in raising business awareness of the need for continuous improvement in the provision of service excellence to the customer.
He also praised British companies, saying that Britain's best could compete with anyone in the world. He did, however, point out that there is no room for complacency and that there is still work to be done to ensure that the high standards and best practice adopted by the nation's finest percolate down to the second tier of business.