Customer Scrutiny Group Reviews

The Customer Scrutiny Group comprises customers from all backgrounds who give up their time to review, scrutinise and monitor our customer-facing services. They identify which services to scrutinise and where they can suggest improvements. 

The group are currently reviewing: 'What support is in place for customers impacted by the financial living crisis .'

Scroll down to find the group's reviews in full and their action plans.

Ground maintenance review | Overview and recommendations

The group chose to review grounds maintenance for their first project as this subject came up in their first meeting. Click here to read their full report which describes their processes for gathering further information, the outcomes and how we can move forward. 

Scrutiny group recommendations

Recommendation

Why are the Panel making this recommendation?

Employ a contracts manager to oversee the work of the Contractors

It is clear that one of the issues that customers and others have with the service is a lack of inspection of works undertaken and time taken to liaise with contractors. When standards are not met there needs to be a robust escalation process so that this is dealt with in a much timelier manner moving forward.

Closer co-ordination and better communication with the ground’s maintenance contractors

Planned meetings with Housing officers

Local contractors engaged to work in smaller areas

 

The way the contract is structured has in the past made it harder for smaller organisations to tender

GIS mapping

 

To ensure that contractors are very clear about the exact scope for each area, including tree management.

Provide customers with clear map of work to be carried out in their area

Customers indicated that at times they were unclear about the work that was expected to be carried out by the contractor. Summer/winter schedules would be useful.

Estate Service Champions

To monitor the grounds maintenance in their area and report back to Westward once a month. Working in partnership to ensure the quality of the service is as good as they can be.

Panel to be involved in future tenders

 

 

Ongoing surveys with residents and promote surveys

 

To encourage a greater number of residents to participate therefore giving Westward Housing a greater overview.

Ground maintenance review | Ongoing action plan

Action Plan

  1. Contract Management
  2. Scheme Management
  3. Customer Satisfaction
  4. Supporting Future Scrutiny
Ground maintenance action plan

No.

Recommendation

 

Target Completion

Revised Completion

Actual Completion

  1. Contract Management

 

1.1

Employ a contracts manager to oversee GM contracts

Jan 2022

 

Jan 2022

Sept 2022

 

 

1.2

Improve coordination & communication between Westward & Contractors

Jan 2022

 

Jan 2022

Apr 2022

July 2022

 

1.3

Engage local contractors to work in smaller areas

Jan 2022

 

Jan 2022

Feb 2022

May 2022

May 2022

1.4

Introduce GIS mapping

Apr 2022

 

April 2022

Sept 2022

 

 

1.5

Monitor customer engagement with contractors

Apr 2022

July 2022

 

Aug 2022

 

 

  1. Scheme Management

 

2.1

Provide customers with clear map of work to be carried out in their area

Sept 2022

 

 

2.2

Estate Service Champions

Mar 2022

April 2022

April 2022

May 2022

July 2022

 

2.3

Involve customers in future tenders

Jun 2022

July 2022

 

Sept 2022

 

 

Nov 2022

 

 

Jan 2023

 

 

  1. Customer Satisfaction

3.1

Launch a programme of customer feedback to gauge satisfaction levels with services

Jun 2022

July 2022

 

  1. Supporting Future Scrutiny

4.1

Westward continue to monitor complaints/calls or emails specific to ground’s maintenance for the next 6 month and present the data gathered to the Scrutiny Group.

Jun 2022

 

Jun 2022

4.2

Further survey results gathered and reviewed by the Scrutiny Group in 6 months.

Jun 2022

Aug 2022

 

4.3

Outcome shared on website for complete transparency and to encourage residents’ feedback whether positive or negative.

 

Feb 2022

 

Feb 2022

Apr 2022

Aug 2022

 

Repairs communications review | Overview and recommendations

Click here to read the full report which describes the customer scrutiny group's processes for gathering further information, the outcomes and how we can move forward in regards to repairs communication.

Repairs communication recommendations

Recommendation

Why are the Panel making this recommendation?

Publish a clear customer contact standard for Westward & all contractors to adhere to when dealing with repairs & maintenance

Both staff and customers would understand the process and who to contact.

Westward are not recording all communications on Open Housing

Single point of contact for ALL repair reporting via the Hub using telephone calls or the My Account online form

This would make monitoring and recording of jobs easier for staff. Would also allow staff to inform customer of any charges that could be incurred

Improve My Account to allow easier reporting and updates on repairs

This would reduce the number of customer calls to the HUB chasing repairs

A copy of repair report emailed to customer

Not all customers have their My Account active. This would gain reduce calls to HUB

Explore the use of a text reminder system & set standard i.e., reminder 3 days before & on the day

Reduce numbers of customers unavailable for repair – saving operative time

Consider the introduction of a call minder /call waiting system allowing customers to queue for a Hub operative by means of a call-back option.

Reduce the amount of time customers spend waiting on

Encourage customers to maintain up-to-date contact information

Will speed up feedback process

Encourage customers to nominate lead tenant or preferred contact.

Save HUB operatives time chasing contacts

Contact us form for customers to make Westward aware of special needs in relation to communication, language, sight etc

Improve services for customers

Contact customers with outstanding repairs on a weekly/monthly basis

This would reduce the number of calls to the hub, with people chasing repairs

Increase customer satisfaction levels

The Scrutiny Panel would be grateful if the Association could consider the report and the recommendations contained and provide a response to the Panel for each one, setting out whether it is accepted or not. Where the Association does not accept a recommendation, we would be keen to understand why not, so that we can consider how else we can make required improvements.

Once the recommendations are agreed we would expect the Association to develop an action plan which will show how each recommendation will be implemented, with appropriate timescales against each, so that we can monitor progress. We would hope that this action plan is monitored not only by ourselves, but by the Senior Management of the Association.

Repairs communications review | Ongoing action plan

Action plan

No.

Recommendation

 

Target Completion

Actual Completion

1

Publish a clear customer contact standard for Westward & all contractors to adhere to when dealing with repairs & maintenance

December 2022

 

 

 

Complete

October 2022

 

June 2022

 

2

Single point of contact for ALL repair reporting via the Hub using telephone calls or the My Account online form

 

Complete

3

Improve My Account to allow easier reporting and updates on repairs

May 2022

 

October 2022

 

4

A copy of repair report emailed to customer

 

Complete

5

Explore the use of a text reminder system & set standard i.e., reminder 3 days before & on the day

October 2022

 

July 2022

 

6

Consider the introduction of a call minder /call waiting system allowing customers to queue for a Hub operative by means of a call-back option.

August 2022

 

August 2023

 

7

Encourage customers to maintain up-to-date contact information

Ongoing

 

July 2022

 

Sept 2022

 

 

 

 

 

8

Encourage customers to nominate lead tenant or preferred contact.

 

Complete

9

Contact us form for customers to make Westward aware of special needs in relation to communication, language, sight etc

June 2022

 

 

 

 

 

July 2022

 

 

July 2022

 

10

Contact customers with outstanding repairs on a weekly/monthly basis

 

 

Complete

Ongoing

 

July 2022

 

August 2022

 

The Customer Scrutiny Group Need You!

Did you know that if you have a particular interest or expertise in any of the areas that are being investigated, you could be part of that project?

You can either sign up for the review or you could just share your views with the group – there is no commitment. Email haveyoursay@westwardhousing.org.uk to participate