We want you to know how well we are performing. We also want to learn from our mistakes and ensure we continue to improve our services. You can find our annual reports on the leaflet rack.
Here is our performance against our service standards for the second half of 2019. We will publish another update in July 2020.
What our complaints are about
We received 240 ‘making-it-right’ complaints in the second half of 2019.
These complaints were mainly about:
- disputing recharges or missed appointment charges
- compensation for damaged items
- the quality of repairs
- the length of time for repairs
- component replacements (such as kitchens, bathrooms, windows and doors)
- cleaning and grounds maintenance
- attitude and behaviour of staff.
20 issues were escalated to complaint reviews or appeals. This is down by four compared to the previous six months.
40% of complaints were upheld. This is 5% higher than the previous six months, which is the equivalent to one more upheld complaint.
Right first time
86% of customer's contact with us was right first time. In other words, we were able to resolve enquiries within the first contact in 86% of cases.
We have recently changed the way we calculate this figure to make it more accurate. We are working on areas where teams can gain more knowledge and training so more of your queries can be answered in the first instance.
Community involvement opportunities
We manage many community services. Full details can be found in our Social Impact Report.
We launched a new programme in primary schools in Sevenoaks to support year six children to move to secondary school, equipping them with the knowledge and resilience to manage this life change in a positive way.
We set up a new Sevenoaks District Youth Assembly, a youth forum to discuss issues and make positive change in the area they live.
Edenbridge Youth Forum members achieved an accreditation from a national awarding body for their work on their WW1 Centenary Project.
We developed a new programme called CookHOUSE, which supports 11-19-year olds to come together to cook meals, which they sit and eat family-style. The programme gives participants the opportunity to learn about food hygiene, the nutritional makeup of a balanced meal and how to build a recipe from scratch.
Training and employment
We offer support to those looking to return to work and wanting to get better paid work. It covers CV writing, interview skills, internet job search, on line applications and accessing work experience. We also offer apprenticeships, careers advice and a range of training courses. In 2019 we helped 83 people get into training or employment.
Kent Support and Assistance Service
Working with Kent County Council (KCC) we support clients in crisis across Kent by providing essential household items that allow people to remain in their home and work through a period of short-term crisis.
We offer furniture, household items, white goods, carpets and basic household equipment to clients assessed by KCC as being in crisis.
In 2019, 974 households were helped by the KSAS service.
Consultations to shape services
Fire and building safety – We asked residents who live in our blocks over 18 metres high the best way to display fire and building safety information. We also asked resident’s views on government proposals for future fire safety regulations.
Rent collection letters – We consulted residents in a workshop about the style and format of the letters we send for rent arrears. Residents gave us their views about how they think we can increase engagement with the Income Team and how they would prefer to be contacted about rent and financial issues.
Missed appointment charges – We asked residents in a workshop and on our online discussion forum for their views on our £20 missed appointment charge. We also asked for ways that we can encourage people to keep to their appointments.
You said, we did
Last year, we reviewed our ‘property MOT’ process. You told us that these visits did not meet your expectations. Many of the issues identified could not be fixed on the same day, and more appointments with other contractors had to be arranged.
We have redesigned these visits and now call them ‘property checks’. We have made sure that we communicate properly so you know what to expect when an engineer comes out to do a property check. These visits will start in April, and all our residents will get a visit once every two years.
'Small is Beautiful' scheme
We reviewed our ‘Small is Beautiful’ scheme based on your feedback. To encourage people to downsize into a smaller property we offer a financial reward based on the number of rooms the person is giving up. This scheme was available to people over the age of 50 and we offered £1000 per bedroom downsized. You told us that this should be extended to all ages and not only those aged over 50. So now this financial reward is offered to all people downsizing regardless of age.
Value for money
Value for money is a cross-cutting theme that encompasses all aspects of our work. We have effective arrangements in place to ensure good value for money is fully embedded and actively maximised in everything we do.
It’s a core activity of our business culture, a prerequisite in terms of procurement and it's embedded in the roles and responsibilities of our employees, customers and stakeholders.
To find out more about how we do this we complete Value for Money Assessments every year. You can find them on the leaflet rack.
We also publish details of all payments over £500 that we spend to develop new affordable homes in partnership with the Homes and Communities Agency.
Take a look at our latest Transparency Report.
If you'd like more information please contact us.