Our Director of Housing, Ian Gilders attended the smaller housing association conference last week and took part in a panel debate on the NHF initiative, Together with Tenants. Ian talked about how trust and customer experience for Housing Associations (especially small or specialist HA’s) is about more than good service – it is also about voice and empowerment and that's why the principles of Together with Tenants (TwT) are so important.
For Advance, one of the key actions flowing from TwT has been reviewing our engagement with customers on strategic issues – hence our reshaped ‘Advance Customer Partnership’. Our commitment to this group is shown by the participation of Chief Executive, Board members, Executive Directors; and by increasing the number and range of customers participating.
Ian also talked about how Advance is implementing new programmes of Tenant Inspectors and Peer Reviews. These are really practical ways of getting customers’ perspectives heard and acted on. In this way we have customers on both sides of the fence – as service users and as service quality assessors.
In the same panel discussion, it was great to hear Amanda Tomlinson of Black Country Housing talking about reshaping the roles of their front line staff to become more customer oriented, as well as Catherine Ryder of the NHF updating on the progress with Together with Tenants nationally. Overall a really good discussion with a focus on making Together with Tenants real.