Complaints Fall a Third in Waltham Forest

The number of complaints made by tenants and residents of the London Borough of Waltham Forest has fallen by a third in the past year.
Figures compiled by Osborne – which delivers repairs and maintenance services for the council’s 12,500 homes – show there were 22 complaints per 1,000 homes in 2015/16.

This is down 31 per cent from 32 complaints per 1,000 homes the previous year and compares to the national average that has increased to 33 complaints for every 1,000 homes, according to consultancy HouseMark.

While there is increased pressure on services due to budget cuts and policy changes, Osborne says now is the time to be investing in improving the customer experience.

Osborne’s Customer Experience Director, Graca Machado, said: “We don’t think that reduced spending should inevitably lead to poorer service. Instead it’s about embracing the challenge and thinking ‘okay, how we can do this better? Fewer complaints don’t just mean happier customers – it also means the service is operating more efficiently. We are putting in time to understand the customer journey, to instil our company values and to train our people.”

Osborne will continue to invest in improving the services it provides to customers to ensure it meets its ‘right first time’ service commitment and continues to decrease complaints. And it is an investment Osborne believes will pay longer-term dividends.

Cllr Khevyn Limbajee, Cabinet Member for Housing said: “It is very encouraging to see a fall in the number of complaints made by Council tenants. It is a key priority of the Council to ensure that everyone is able to live in good quality accommodation, and these results show we are going in the right direction since taking management of all Council housing in the borough last year. Through our partnership working with Osborne we are able to provide a more responsive repair and maintenance service that is effectively meeting the needs of our residents.”

Graca adds: “Mapping out the customer journey and getting tenants involved in the process has allowed us to identify opportunities to deliver the service more efficiently at the same time as improving the experience for them.”