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Learning from complaints spring 2022

Claire Blacka

Written by Claire Blacka, head of customer engagement

Welcome to our quarterly blog about how we are learning from complaints and making changes as a result.

We are looking at the best way to handle complaints to improve the experience for our customers. This includes looking at new resources and new systems, training colleagues, and asking you what recommendations you have.

Creating an positive complaints culture

If you read our previous blog, Learning from complaints winter 2021, you will know we are working towards a positive complaints culture for our colleagues and customers. With the help of customer groups, we have launched new training for our colleagues.

Our newest module looks at our managing unacceptable behaviour policy. This policy is used for a few abusive or inappropriate customers in their contact with us. However, they often have a valid complaint underneath all this. So, the policy ensures we still address this while protecting our colleagues and other customers.

Our customers helped us a lot with this module. They wanted to ensure that we considered customers' circumstances, mental health and people with good reason to feel cross. Their input was invaluable, and we have come up with guidance to deliver the best outcome for everyone.

Issues that matter to you

Here are some of the things you have raised that we've been looking into:

Property management policies
As you can imagine, we have many policies to help us manage our properties. We currently have an extensive review to ensure that policies are updated and valuable. Customers are involved with the review and will be helping us look at things like assistance and adaptations, rechargeable repairs, home improvements, and permissions.

Communal doors play a significant role in helping you feel safe at home. Our maintenance team is working on fast, effective repairs to ensure you feel secure in your home. More news to come on this soon.

Trees are great, but we want to be able to manage them. We are developing a tree management policy to look at how we manage trees in communal spaces.

This will include a list of 'acceptable' trees and considering the environmental impact if we have to remove a tree.

People who help us manage our homes
Issues between customers, housing associations and managing agents are common. In England, the Housing Ombudsman has reviewed this and released the Housing Ombudsman Spotlight report on managing agents March 2022. Over the coming months, we will address all the recommendations to ensure our customers receive the best service possible.

Damp and mould
Damp, mould and condensation are ongoing issues in housing. Luckily, the Housing Ombudsman has released the Housing Ombudsman Spotlight report on damp and mould to help landlords improve. We are working through this and putting these recommendations into an action plan.

Get involved

There's lots of ways to shape what we do and make a difference to your community.

Give us your feedback

If you’ve got a great idea that helps us do things better, don’t be shy, just let us know. If you pop over to our compliments and complaints information, we’ll tell you how you can give us your feedback.

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