In 2018 Accent launched its Corporate Strategy, in which we stated our aim to be with customers for their journeys. We consulted with customers to check we are still heading in the right direction. 

We are pleased to report that almost 900 customers took part. You can see the full results here.

The results of this survey will inform our new 5 Year Corporate Strategy.

Findings

  • Customers tend to agree that Accent should prioritise calls from vulnerable customers and encourage other customers to use online services – but many were concerned that not all customers would be able to access online services. Many customers indicated that they would be happy to use online services, but only if they work as effectively as the services delivered through other channels.
  • Most customers prefer to be notified about changes to services as and when they happen. Most customers agree that email is a quick, convenient and cost-effective way to do this, but that emails should be aimed at particular groups of customers to avoid supplying them with information which is irrelevant to their circumstances.
  • 6 out of 10 general needs customers would be happy with fewer visits from their Customer Partner, as long as they are contacted personally from time-to-time. However, only 4 out of 10 homeowners felt this way about their Homeownership Specialist.
  • Some customers expressed the view that they scarcely see their Customer Partners anyway, and that seeing them less often would mean not seeing them at all. Some customers feel like they do not benefit from visits as they usually take place during working hours, when they are unavailable.
  • Most customers are happy for Accent colleagues to work flexibly, but some feel that set hours would give a better indication of when they might be available.
  • Customers are generally happy to see Accent colleagues less often if it means saving money and helping the environment, but not at the expense of delivering an excellent customer service. Some customers expressed the view that their neighbourhood does not get the attention it requires from the Customer Partner.
  • Customers would generally be happy to attempt sending photos and videos of repairs issues to help diagnose the problem, but acknowledged that not all customers would be able to do this. Many customers felt that more complex repairs issues would still require an inspection from a surveyor.
  • Customers expect that Accent colleagues are sufficiently trained to deal with any type of enquiry and have little expectation of speaking to the same person every time they called. That being said, some customers feel that there is value in building a relationship with an individual and that it saved them from having to reiterate an issue.
  • Customers are divided as to whether Accent should support customers to get online. Some feel that if we are encouraging customers to use online services, then we should also provide help to access them. Other customers suggested that Accent is not best placed to deliver this type of service and that there was plenty of help available elsewhere.
  • Customers feel that Accent should serve as the first point of contact for customers who needed support with other aspects of their life – but that other providers are better equipped to deliver this type of support. Some customers expressed the view that some of Accent’s partnerships with contractors and suppliers are in need of improvement, and until these are resolved we should not be entering new agreements.
  • Customers feel that rewarding customers who are involved in their local communities could help to promote harmonious communities. However, some customers who are not able to volunteer are concerned that they might be treated less favourably if Accent were to do this.
  • Up to one third of customers would consider renting a home that they had not been able to view in person, as long as enough information about the property is provided for them to be able to make an informed decision. Customers were less inclined to buy a home that they had not been able to view in person.
  • 6 out of 10 customers would consider participating in online discussions via Zoom. Many customers indicated that they were already doing this.
  • More customers felt that Accent’s services had ‘got better’ over the last twelve months than had ‘got worse’ – but this tendency did not occur in homeowners.
  • Only 51% of customers were satisfied that Accent ‘listens to their views and acts upon them’, down from 64% in 2016.

What next?

It may be some time before you notice any changes to our services on the basis of this feedback, but in the meantime we hope this provides some assurance that your views have been taken into consideration. 

We will be in touch again to let you know the outcomes of the survey.

Join the Accent 500

An informal online community of involved residents, who take part in regular surveys and consultations.

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