As the first shoots of spring seem to be here, we’re all looking forward to being able to spend more time outdoors and with friends or family. The announcement of the ‘road map’ to gradually reduce coronavirus restrictions gives us a little more ability to plan some of our key services for customers.
We’ve started to return to a more extensive repairs service from Monday, March 8 onwards, at first to complete work that has already been reported. From Monday, March 29 we’ll be making new appointments for non-essential repairs.
Some people might think of that as a cautious response to the ‘road map’, but behind the headlines, caution was the theme for the plan. It’d be wrong for us to rush back to ‘normal’ and risk ruining the good work that has been done.
For the time being at least, we’ll also still be practicing the same caution when it comes to Personal Protective Equipment and other measures. That still means that some things could take longer. But it’s the right thing to do, for the safety of everybody.
The latest government guidance also means that it’ll be some time before we return to having all of our employees based in offices. That means we’re going to continue to deliver most of our advice and support services in the same we have for nearly a year now.
I strongly suspect that even when the coronavirus pandemic is but a memory, the role of video calls, our customer app and many other digital tools we’ve developed during the lockdowns, will not be diminished. We know that for most of our customers, the digital access to our services that we now have, makes things significantly easier.
That was brought home massively by the results of our latest Survey of Tenants and Residents; the annual independent research carried out into the satisfaction of believe housing customers. Our response to coronavirus clearly played a substantial role in the results. But the survey also showed many examples of how our customers value the changes made in the longer term too.
Overall customer satisfaction sits at 86.8%, which is up on 2019 … something that many organisations, across a variety of sectors, have not seen. We’re not resting on our laurels, we never will, but that means that believe housing is one of the top 10 best performing housing organisations in the country.