Gentoo, South East Consortium (SEC), Poplar HARCA, Longhurst, and Your Housing have been confirmed as the second group of investors in HACT’s social value roadmap.
The group joins Clarion Futures, Sovereign, and Fusion21, who were confirmed as the first group of investors in the roadmap, the goal of which is for the social housing sector use social value information to improve services, enhance decision-making, and increase its overall impact.
“These pioneering organisations have demonstrated their commitment to be at the forefront of social value measurement and implementation,” said Andrew van Doorn, chief executive of HACT.
“We’re delighted that these organisations bring different perspectives based on business focus, size, and geography to the social value roadmap. Together we can deliver the future of social value in social housing.”
The social value roadmap was launched in September 2020 after development by the UK Social Value in Housing Taskforce, which was composed of 17 organisations including leading social housing organisations, the Regulator for Social Housing, and international experts in social value.
Babu Bhattacherjee, director of Communities and Neighbourhoods at Poplar HARCA, said: “At Poplar HARCA, making a positive difference to our local community is at the heart of everything that we do.
“Understanding the impact of the work that we do is essential for us – and the ability to measure this is key to valuing and sustaining this work.
“The social value roadmap is an initiative that is warmly welcomed and strong supported by us and we are pleased to support HACT’s work.”
Charmaine Simei, director of Community Investment at Longhurst, said: “Our Improving Lives strategy was launched prior to the outbreak of COVID-19 as a clear and unwavering commitment to our social purpose and an understanding of our responsibility as civic and community anchors.
“This year has shone a light on the depth of inequalities within our society, many of which we already knew of.
“However, the depth and breadth of these scars has been nonetheless shocking, and in many areas of life we can never unsee what the pandemic has revealed.
“Going forward, the housing sector can no longer just be seen to be doing the right things – we need to understand our impact and its value.
“Contributing to the social value roadmap and the expansion of the UK Social Value Bank’s scope is an important piece of work that’s key to supporting a new business paradigm across the sector.
“That’s one that’s financially, ethically, socially and environmentally sound.
“Many across the sector have been moving along this road for some time now – 2020 has just given us all one big push.”
Marc Baines, managing director of South East Consortium, said: “SEC exists to support the sector we love – social housing. So, as you can imagine the social value through public procurement is incredibly important to our Members.
“Teaming up with HACT to shape the social value roadmap ahead is something we’ll ask all of our Members to get involved in.
“Through our partnership they’ll be able to influence the project ahead. Our relationship with HACT will help us to better advise and support customers who ask how they can get more social benefit through our frameworks and services.
“This partnership will also help us to deliver our key strategic priorities which were designed by our Members.”
Nigel Wilson, CEO of Gentoo, said: “Gentoo is delighted to sign up to this vital roadmap that will support us in ensuring social impact and value is driving our business decision making and shaping the important services we deliver to tenants.
“Social purpose is at the heart of our organisation and we look forward to working closely with HACT to fully utilise the social value roadmap so we can enhance the positive impact we have on people in Sunderland.”
Dave Litherland, head of Regeneration, Your Housing Group, said: “Your Housing Group have been recording social value since 2013 across its operational and community investment teams.
“We are delighted to be working on shaping and influencing social value measurement for the future to meet the changing environment we are now working in.”
Gavin Wolstenhulme, Procurement manager, South East Consortium, said: “I firmly believe this fits well with SEC’s strategic objectives – influencing the sector and our aim to improve our members’ understanding of social value, quantifying their Social Value impact for them and their residents.”
HACT is discussing involvement in the roadmap with over 30 more organisations from inside and outside the social housing sector.
The roadmap for social value has been developed by the UK Social Value in Housing Taskforce, which comprised the following organisations:
- Clarion Futures
- Communities that Work
- Community Housing Cymru
- The Guinness Partnership
- Keep Moat Homes
- Longhurst Group
- Morgan Sindall Property Services
- Northern Housing Consortium
- National Housing Federation
- Regulator of Social Housing
- Scottish Federation of Housing Associations
- South East Consortium
- Trower and Hamlins
The first meeting of the social value roadmap group is scheduled to take place in January 2021.
Optimising resident feedback
Recently, HACT also launched new framework designed to optimise resident feedback.
The five-stage framework was developed in collaboration with Network Homes, and is aime at social housing organisations looking to respond more effectively to customer responses.
The framework for resident feedback consists of five stages:
- Why are you collecting resident feedback?
- Who are you collecting feedback from?
- How are you collecting resident feedback?
- Which metrics are you using?
- What are you doing with resident feedback once you’ve collected it?
“The framework will help social housing organisations re-align feedback as a tool that delivers on their responsibility to their residents and transparently demonstrates to the regulator that they are meeting and exceeding standards,” said Rob Wray, chief innovation officer, HACT.
The five-stage framework has been developed following extensive research into existing resident feedback processes and is intended for use across the social housing sector.
Fabio Miccoli, Research and Policy analyst at Network Homes, said: “Flexibility is the key strength of this framework, in that it allows very different social landlords – by strategic objectives or geographical focus, for instance – to review their approach to measuring resident feedback whilst retaining the ability to properly apply the recommendations to their specific circumstances.
“In the context of a changing relationship with our residents, as we navigate through the Coronavirus crisis, and following the publication of the Social Housing White Paper, we hope the framework will serve as a valuable tool to put resident feedback to more meaningful operational use.
Wray added: “The report backs up the White Paper’s assertion that the sector needs a new set of customer satisfaction metrics to measure the things that matter to residents.
“There is a window of opportunity for the sector to collaborate and work with residents and the Regulator to develop metrics to ensure the resident voice is at the heart of decision-making.”
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