Customer Voice – listening, learning, and acting on customer feedback

Our customers' thoughts, views and experiences play a crucial role in how we shape our strategy, make improvements, and provide a better service for all our customers.

For us, Customer Voice isn’t just one part of our service, it’s embedded in every team across the business and is at the heart of the services we provide. Customers are involved right across the board, from co-designing our current and future services, to reviewing our customer annual report and advising on policy, and their voice is invaluable.

Our Customer and Community Network (CCN) for example, is made up of customers and senior leaders from across our Customer Services team who come together to scrutinise, challenge, and contribute to our future transformation work.

Listening and learning

We’ve seen just how powerful meaningful customer engagement can be. Last year our kitchen design consultation saw over 600 customers help us choose a range of new kitchen designs, which are now fitted every day in our homes. We’re listening to what customers want and designing their homes and our service around them.

Hundreds of customers also fed into our COVID-19 service recovery planning, offering valuable feedback which helped us to plan our approach to tackling the backlog of repairs that had built up as a result of three national lockdowns.

Another example is that of a recent grounds maintenance service procurement exercise. As part of the consultations, customers told us they wanted a professional service that prioritised health and safety and sustainability. Four customers took part in the process to evaluate tenders and two joined our interview panel to meet prospective contractors.

And importantly, at the end of any consultation work we let customers know how their feedback has influenced our work and decisions, to share the positive impact their involvement has had.

The year ahead

Over the next 12 months we’ll be offering even more ways for customers to give us feedback, making it even easier for them to connect with us. This will help us hear a more diverse range of views in a variety of ways that truly meets our customers’ individual needs.

We’ll continue to use complaints and compliments as an opportunity to help us understand what’s important to our customers, so that we can improve our services and nurture what’s already working well.

This year we’ve begun working towards gaining accreditation with the Tenant participation advisory service (Tpas’). This process will ensure that the way we listen to and involve our customers follows industry best practice and will help us to evolve our offer.

The Tpas’ accreditation is just one way that we’re showing our commitment to listening to customers so we can co-design and improve our services.

We’re also committed to encouraging local communities to have their say about how we shape the places our customers live now and in the future.

Alongside these goals, we’re working towards our targets to grow the number of customers getting involved from 4,000 to 15,000 and increasing our response rate for customer surveys to 50% by 2025.

We’ve achieved a lot through our partnership with the Institute of Customer Service (ICS), and we’re learning and collaborating with the very best across the sector.We’ve begun work towards achieving the ServiceMark accreditation, the ICS national standard in customer service. We surveyed a selection of customers and colleagues about their experiences and received many positive comments from them about our helpful, friendly teams. These early results show that we’re on track to achieving the ServiceMark accreditation and we hope to do this by 2024.

Customer Voice and engagement underpins our Customer Experience strategy, which is all about transforming how we work to ensure we have a sustainable, resilient business and improving the experience of our colleagues and our customers.  

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