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Post Wed Jul 31, 2013 6:35 pm

Trusted Trader

I have had an email from my local council inviting me to participate in their "Trusted Trader" scheme in association with trading standards

They describe it as follows:-

West Lothian Trusted Trader aims to launch in 2013 and will allow consumers to search for a reputable trader. Consumers can access comments from previous customers and leave their own feedback. Any traders joining the scheme are required to sign up to a code of practice agreeing to trade fairly, with Trading Standards monitoring their business practices. Membership will be free for the first year of operation of the scheme. Thereafter, an annual membership fee will be payable to cover the promotion of the scheme. The fee level has yet to be set but will be influenced by the number of members and their desired level of promotion.

Has anyone any experience of any similar schemes?

I'm not sure about it myself - it seems like just another revenue scheme being set up by my local council.

I've looked at their application forms and they are asking for a lot of "intimate" detail about your business and I can't help but feel this is a case of big brother and local councils meddling in affairs that really have nothing to do with them (as well as selling what is basicly advertising). But then again maybe it's just the cynic in me that makes me view it this way, and perhaps it is a force for good that can benefit both businesses and consumers?

What do you think?
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Post Wed Jul 31, 2013 8:45 pm

Monitoring your business practises?

Sounds like more interference from our government.......we should be watching them not the other way around!

John
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Post Wed Jul 31, 2013 9:20 pm

Phil
the local council do a similar scheme here, basically it reassures customers that businesses have been scrutinized and that they have an alternative avenue to get things sorted if something does go wrong. Its not done in an heavy handed fashion they basically act as an intermediary. Its mainly used by garages and builders in my area
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Post Thu Aug 01, 2013 9:02 am

If Council/Government have anything to do with it you can be assured that even if it is half good at the start it will degenerate into an expensive political pile of sh!t.
Alan D
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Post Thu Aug 01, 2013 10:57 pm

Hi there we have a local system like this too, but i agree a lot of personal detail goes into the forms, and in our area its really mainly advertised for council tennants etc even though thats not what they say it's for,
depending on your target market, i have also heard that if you are tendering for council contracts they will only select of the trusted trader list (if you belive that)
more like who you know !!! :bigwink:
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Post Fri Aug 02, 2013 8:58 am

Looked at it here and deemed it to be pointless as no customer selects a sign company on the basis of 'oooh, sticker on the window to say they MUST be good'.

How can trading standards quantify a 'trusted / good' company (other than by knowing every detail of your finances apparently)...and do business to business clientèle care about some poxy council issued label?
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Post Sat Aug 03, 2013 8:54 am

DavidRogers wrote:Looked at it here and deemed it to be pointless as no customer selects a sign company on the basis of 'oooh, sticker on the window to say they MUST be good'.

How can trading standards quantify a 'trusted / good' company (other than by knowing every detail of your finances apparently)...and do business to business clientèle care about some poxy council issued label?


Hear Hear! Council cuts bed in - department heads running around like headless chickens - must justify their existence and appear essential to the common good - must escape the grim reaper's scythe at any cost (your cost!).

People spending other people's money - easy!
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Post Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:10 pm

They tried it in Fife a few years ago, not actually sure if it is still running to be honest. The idea behind the scheme is actually pretty good but as with any good idea that Councils get their hands on the main idea behind it has been changed to something that is going to generate them some kind of income without them having to do a lot of work.

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