We believe that almost 1,000 Accent residents are claiming Universal Credit, so it is essential that Accent is equipped to offer the best possible advice and support.
We are pleased to report that almost 100 residents took part in our survey, aimed at finding out more about customers’ experiences claiming this new benefit. Your feedback has been instrumental in helping us to improve the advice and support we are able to offer claimants. Here are some examples of how you have influenced our service delivery:
Only 28% respondents accessed support from Accent to help them manage their Universal Credit Claim.
We will be more proactive in offering support to residents. We will ensure that households are contacted at the most crucial stages of their claim (typically the first few weeks).
Residents who had accessed Accent’s Tenancy Sustainability service were pleased with the support provided, but many residents did not know that Accent was able to provide this support.
We will make better use of our online communication channels to promote our support services.
60% of respondents experienced difficulty budgeting and/or paying bills.
We will continue to invest in our tenancy support services to ensure that residents receive the best possible advice to help them manage their income and outgoings. Our front-line staff typically offer over 1,000 customers financial advice every year.
Families appear to be the most severely impacted by the pitfalls of Universal Credit; including delayed payments and managing claims on variable incomes.
We will make better use of the data we hold about residents and their households to offer tailored support to individuals based on their particular circumstances.
Residents living in different parts of the country had different experiences of Universal Credit claims.
Our regional teams will share best practice, so that residents all over the country will get the benefit of our experience.
Some residents felt ‘harassed’ by Accent over their rent arrears or that Accent had failed to understand the difficulties they were experiencing in paying their rent.
In cases where residents keep us informed about any difficulties they may be experiencing in paying their rent, we will be reasonable and flexible in our approach to recovering debt. We will no longer write to residents who owe less than £10, as this is not cost-effective.
Join the Accent 500
An informal online community of residents from across our regions