The Advance Customer Partnership met virtually on Wednesday, with members joining by video and phone. The Partnership would usually meet in person, but as Chris (a Shared Owner) said “It’s different but it’s exciting! It’s a shame we can’t all meet, but it’s a good opportunity to look at new ways to do things.”
The first topic of conversation was (naturally) COVID-19, customers’ experiences during lockdown and how we have responded as an organisation. We were pleased to hear that customers felt supported during this time and confident in staff. Tom (a Support customer) told us that staff had supported him through the lockdown by keeping to his routine as much as possible and that it made him feel safe that staff had access to PPE and were using it.
The big question was “What next?” – something we have all been asking recently. We know that this is important to our customers, so it will shape the way we communicate with our customers in the coming months. In the meantime the Partnership was able to share information about how we are moving forward, including:
- A new (socially distanced) way of auditing services, to ensure we continue delivering high quality services
- An increase in routine maintenance services where these can be delivered safely
- Action plans for responding to local need, such as the re-introduction of lockdown measures in Leicester
Next on the agenda was the new Customer Scorecard. Designed by the customer members of the Partnership, the Scorecard reports on measures that are important to our customers and makes sure that they can hold us to account. The scorecard includes:
- Compliance with safety checks, including gas, electrics and fire
- Repairs completed on time, and how satisfied customers were with the service
- Ratings of Support schemes by our internal auditor
- The number of people using our website and the customer portal MyAdvance
- Customer satisfaction with complaints
Satisfaction with the complaints process was also discussed as the Partnership reviewed the comments, compliments and complaints received over the last year. Adam (who received Housing and Support from Advance) said, “It’s great to see this information because we can see that Advance is always trying to improve things and that they listen to us.”
For more information about the Advance Customer Partnership you can contact Rachel Fox (Customer Engagement Manager) at CustomerEngagement@advanceuk.org. The Partnership’s next meeting will be in October.