Review of Work
October 2018 – April 2019
Reflecting on the past six months, I am very proud of the work that the Tenant Quality Forum has done and the progress made. The Forum meets monthly and is the main consultative and scrutiny group that focuses on key areas of service delivery such as repairs and estate management. We help gather and debate feedback from local communities on services provided by Tai Calon and other partners.
Our work is wide ranging and includes scrutinising performance, agreeing service standards, monitoring performance indicators against these standards each quarter and Tai Calon’s handling of complaints. We respond to consultations on key issues such as the proposed annual rent increase and also help with design and detail of the planned programmes.
Ensuring that we have a strong voice and real influence is critical and when we review the work we have done over the past six months we can see the wide range of issues and service areas that the Forum has been involved in.
As well as receiving information so that we are better placed to give advice and support to tenants, our views and opinions have been taken into account when important issues have been reviewed. We are proud to have had direct influence over service delivery and associated improvements and I have highlighted a number of these.
- Windows- Feedback from tenants and our own experience showed that all was not working to plan. We held a series of meetings with the contractor and relevant staff including the CEO, Joe Logan. We, as a group, highlighted what in our mind had gone wrong and what needed to change. I am pleased to say that we were listened to and improvements have been made. A good example is that without adding to costs, tenants now have a wider choice of window design. Communication by the contractor has also improved.
- Asset Management Strategy (AMS)- This strategy sets out how Tai Calon will work to maintain and improve homes. The AMS includes new elements and a new format to ensure that the tenants’ voice and the customer experience feature prominently. We had a key role in the design of this new strategic document that provides our direction of travel for the years ahead.
- Preventative Maintenance Programmes- You will now start to see the introduction of more cyclical repairs and that focus on the whole environment that will help ensure that Tai Calon continue to maintain our homes as well as improve our neighbourhoods. Over the coming months and years we will need to consult much more at a local level to agree what tenants really want to see changed and improved in their neighbourhood.
- New Build Programme- We have been briefed in detail on the plans to start to build. We have made it clear to staff that although it is exciting and positive news, Tai Calon needs to continue to improve front line services that impact on all tenants.
- Out Of Hours- Members of the Forum worked alongside Tai Calon staff and also tenants from Bron Afon Housing Association to help find a new contractor to provide this important service. Our members interviewed prospective contractors, which led to the contract being awarded to Delta Wellbeing in April 2019. It was a great example of the direct influence we have.
- Budget- In January 2019 we were briefed on and involved in setting budgets for 2019/2020 and supported decisions that helped ensure that the majority of resources continue to be spent on front line services such as repairs and investing in our homes. These services of course must be paid for and we understand that our rent is paid to cover these costs.
I would like to thank the staff and Executive Team from Tai Calon who have worked with us and also our many partners, including contractors and other agencies that support our tenants.
The Forum is always looking to improve and make sure our contribution is making a positive difference. In the future I particularly look forward to working with Tai Calon on a new series of reviews that will help improve services, communication and customer care.
I am confident that moving forward we have a strong Forum with members that are capable of challenging and working in partnership with Tai Calon to help develop even better services for tenants.
Elaine Townsend– Chair of Tenant Quality Forum