Housing sector

Inside Housing – Commentary – Social housing industry can learn about customer service from Build to Rent operators

Interestingly, metrics are analyzed locally, and special attention is given to textual commentary, as well as trend analysis, to inform business decisions. How often do housing associations review their feedback at the street, block, project or officer level?

From the outside, it seems that most housing associations still don’t care about online reviews, such as Google, Trust Pilot and All Agents, and have a mixed approach to how they are answered and acknowledged.

Responses to online reviews, which are often a cry for help, range from being completely ignored to rather condescending “your feedback is important to us…” responses, regardless of the issues raised by the reviews. customers who already feel no. we listen.

“Often it’s not what you spend on services, it’s the impact you want to have on the customer”

A quick Google search of household names in the social housing sector shows that most have ratings of one to two stars. For most companies, this would simply not be acceptable. How can this be largely overlooked for organizations that provide some of the most basic yet essential services?

Culture is the key. A phrase often heard in the BTR industry is how to “exceed customer expectations?” How often do people in the social housing sector hear “we need to manage customer expectations? Most BTR operators work with financial models similar to the social housing sector. Often it’s not what you spend on services, it’s the impact you want to have on the customer.

My final observation concerns diversity. On my first day at Grainger, I was surprised to find that the management team I joined was the most diverse I had ever been on. And it was the result of finding the best people with different ideas and experiences.

On the other hand, the “leaders” of the social housing sector finally acknowledge having tried for too long to recruit in their image. It brought back painful memories. Those who sign various pledges will not remember or understand how they made me feel assuming I worked for a BAME housing association or never considered myself fit to sit on the boards of administration of the BAME housing association.

I look forward to joining Hightown and working with the teams and residents on how to move the dial and start exceeding expectations.

Manpreet Dillon, Director of Housing, Hightown