Together with Tenants is a great opportunity for Yorkshire Housing as we look to achieve our vision.
A key part of this strategy is the following: “Everyone should have the opportunity to live in a quality home they can afford.”
We are committed to delivering a great customer experience by putting our customers at the heart of all we do.
And we know that to achieve this we need to understand our customers and ensure they are able to effectively challenge and hold us to account.
Together with Tenants was introduced by the National Housing Federation – and Yorkshire Housing is a pioneering early adopter (watch our video explaining Together with Tenants here).
As we own and manage nearly 20,000 homes, covering a huge area from Sheffield in the south, across Leeds and Bradford, to Craven in the north plus Harrogate, York and Malton in the east, it is really important that we understand the views of all our different customers.
We chose to pilot this work in the established area of Craven, with Skipton at its centre, where there was already a residents’ panel keen to review their approach and ensure meaningful engagement.
An initial charter, based on the Together with Tenants commitments, was developed with a sub-group and sent out to all residents in the area for feedback before being presented to the panel for approval.
The key commitments of the charter centre around relationships, communication, voice and influence, accountability, quality and when things go wrong.
We have also developed a local Craven Standard and a structure that will allow the group to review and scrutinise our performance in this area and report back to our board.
The next challenge is to embed this approach across all our other areas.
We are thinking carefully about how we can identify subjects that are broad enough for us to provide effective support, but small enough for residents to come together as a group and reach a consensus.
Each areas will be supported to develop their own local standard, focusing on the part of the commitments that is most important to them.
We will also work with them to develop a mechanism for monitoring our performance.
Customers may not want to attend meetings in person, so we will work with volunteers to develop virtual meetings and online groups that fit the needs of their lifestyles.
Our hope is that these standards will all be in place, along with a method for review and reporting, by the end of January 2021.
We will continue to work with customers to review and improve the structures as we embed this new area of work.
We are looking for volunteers to be involved in this important piece of work from across all Yorkshire Housing regions.
- If you are interested, then please call Susan Godbold, customer insight and engagement manager, for an informal chat on 07557 592802.