The nation needs more housing, and few companies have stepped up to the mark like The Guinness Partnership, which has constructed over 66,000 homes across the length and breadth of the UK. Their role doesn’t end with bricks and mortar, however. Because for all the technical excellence shown by architects and craftsmen, the buildings are still missing a further, essential element: community.
Community singularly transforms the character of a housing scheme, making a neighbourhood liveable in a way that no amount of amenities can, while also allowing common problems to be resolved quickly and efficiently. That’s why The Guinness Partnership decided on HeyHub as their partner of choice. Community can’t be artificially ‘made’, of course. But it can be provided with the perfect breeding ground, and that’s precisely what the Partnership’s app does.
By leveraging HeyHub’s unique technology stack and expertise in building socially engaged communities, the tenant experience has been dramatically improved.
Firstly, tenants were given the chance to explore interests-based ‘communities’. Using these, tenants could find and connect with their likeminded neighbours. It’s a quirk of modern life that we often know more about people on the other side of the planet than we do the people who live mere feet away. Providing residents with a digital community in which they can share and explore interests unlocks far greater potential for tenant satisfaction.
It is also, crucially, opt-in. The app’s geofencing function means that it can automatically deduce in which part of a housing scheme a resident is living, and therefore which community they belong to. Should any one individual feel uncomfortable with this arrangement, however, they do not have to worry about being auto-enrolled. They can easily make themselves uncontactable, leveraging HeyHub’s hidden mode.
Residents able to form and access communities, but also to discover and book the latest events occurring at their scheme via HeyHub’s platform, which elegantly gathers all attendees into a single, easily-contactable micro-community.
The app’s benefits are immensely practical too. At this moment in time, it’s common practice for a housing scheme to rely on call centres, which end up becoming bottlenecks and focal points for resident irritation. Not only are these less productive than they should be, they also create a sense of ill-feeling that can sit awkwardly at the heart of a nascent community.
Secondly, Customer Liaison Officers can utilise the platform to contact tenants directly via their own devices while, at the same time, giving residents the opportunity to report any property or maintenance issues directly from the app. Speed of response and ease-of-use are clearly key benefits, the functionality also allows a scheme’s management team to quickly pinpoint whether an issue is affecting multiple tenants.
The Guinness Partnership were looking for a way of enhancing the tenant experience by building an engaged digital community for their tenants, one that also gave them easy access to on-site amenities. Which is another way of saying that they wanted to use the latest technology to bring back the very traditional virtue of community — shoring up both the cultural and material wellbeing of a new neighbourhood.