22 Mar 2023

Doing best, what matters most: the Johnnie Johnson Housing ethos for customer satisfaction

Johnnie Johnson Housing has always been bold, ambitious and punched above its weight. We’ve been a trusted housing provider for over 50 years, specifically focused on the over 55’s in our communities across the North West, North East and Yorkshire and Derbyshire.

Back in 2021 we embarked on a journey to reimagine our service offer to our 7,000 customers, to help drive more value and deliver best what matters most to them. We initiated a holistic review of our customer offer, branded as our Customer First strategy. We involved our customers throughout our design work, by attending their coffee morning events and listening to their concerns and frustrations, as well as the things that delight them and that are valued by them. We ran online sessions for customers who were unavailable during the day and ran surveys to capture as much feedback as possible.

Once we had designed our new service offer with colleagues from across all areas of the business, and then we went back to our customers to showcase our designs and gain feedback. Our designs were a resounding success, and customers have embraced our vision.

In total over 1,700 customers participated in our activities and befriending pilots, as well as participated in our Customer First design research and validation.

To support our vision, we also worked in partnership with The Leadership Factor to truly understand what was important to our customers and more importantly, how satisfied they are on those aspects. Over 700 people took part in the research, and it really helped us understand where our gaps and opportunities were, to ensure we could focus on ‘Doing best, what matters most’ and covered three main areas:

  • The home: covering aspects of quality, health and safety and security
  • Contact: how easy it is to contact us and how we deal with their queries
  • Repairs and maintenance: how we deal with the quality and effectiveness of service delivery.

Our innovative approach to customer centric design has completely changed the way we listen and respond to our customer’s needs.

The backbone of this was us bringing our customer and neighbourhood teams together and introducing new roles that supported:

  • The delivery of our customer priorities, identified through The Leadership Factor
  • Customers wellbeing: increasing activities, linking in with Astraline, our 24/7 TEC service, to help residents remain independent
  • Our quality and performance: building consistency in schemes, listening and acting on customer feedback and implementing a focused approach to engagement
  • Enhanced welfare advice and support: tackling increasing living costs with additional support and guidance
  • Customer support when they move in or move on: providing support throughout the lifetime of their tenancy
  • A tenure neutral service: delivered by experts who can tailor services with flexible resource and specialist knowledge
  • Dedicated digital engagement: offering choice and guidance to increase customers digital skills, confidence and inclusion
  • Bringing our service teams together to enable a greater first-time resolution, more multichannel ways to get in touch, delivered by a flexible team with a wider remit of knowledge
  • The use of data and insight to support our front-line teams to know our customers better and deliver a more tailored service

The work undertaken so far, has put us in a really good position, as we now move towards implementing the Tenant Satisfaction Measures (TSM’s) ready for reporting from April 2024. We are currently testing the measures with a sample of our customer base and initial results are positive.

A huge part of our continued success and important customer focus is a direct result of our commitment to continuing our face to face support delivered through our community housing officers. Our talented colleagues who carry out these roles are hugely valued and it has always been part of our vision to work in partnership with CIH to create an academy and qualification pathway, which develops our colleagues, ensuring they have the skills, tools and knowledge to deliver the best possible service to our customers.

We pride ourselves on colleagues loving where they work, as we know this has a positive impact on retention and more importantly delivery of service and satisfaction for customers. Providing safe and secure homes is a must, but the added extra value that we feel customer first has delivered for us has ensured that our customers love where they live and that their opinion is both listened to and valued.

Written by Kate McArdell-Broome

Kate is the assistant director of customer and neighbourhoods at Johnnie Johnson Housing.