At Abri, we’re committed to placing our customers at the heart of our organisation.
After all, our mission is to create great communities and empower lives. And we can only do this by working with our customers and partners.
We’re inviting all customers to be involved – and there are lots of different ways. Here you can explore the different ways you can provide feedback, get involved yourself, and review our performance.
It's important that we consult with our customers when major decisions are being made.
We will consult with customers on any proposals that significantly affect our service offers and policies.
We shall also consult at least once every three years on the best way of involving customers in the governance and scrutiny of Abri’s housing management service.
The Resident Scrutiny Group reviews the services delivered by Abri
They make sure we’re doing everything we should be. This includes monitoring our performance and decision-making process. They also use their findings to make recommendations for improvements and to provide support where it’s needed. The group follow the progress of changes and improvements through regular follow ups.
The Scrutiny Group is led by Andy Frost, who is an Abri resident and was appointed as Chair in October 2023.
There is a direct link between the Scrutiny Group and our Board here at Abri.
The work of the group is important, and to make sure that’s recognised by the organisation, Andy, the chair of the Scrutiny Group is also a member of the Audit and Risk Committee. This makes sure there is a direct link between the Board and the Scrutiny Group which is made stronger by an annual Co-Regulation event. This is when members of the Scrutiny Group are invited to meet with the Board and Executive Team and challenge them and hold them to account for the decisions made during that year.
The Group complete a minimum of three reviews a year. The subjects are chosen through an annual consultation to our residents; after the main themes are established the Group will decide a topic to deep dive into to complete their review. For the year 2022/23, the group reviewed planned delivery, communications and complaints – all of these reviews can be found on the Group’s section of our website. For their 2023/24 reviews, they’re looking into communal and estate services, Abri’s response to the cost of living crisis and mandatory safety testing.
More widely, the Group has been involved in monitoring the performance of other important services, such as complaints handling. And it’s also met recently with members of the Board and Executive as part a Co-Regulation Day to discuss key decisions taken over the past year.
2023 sees the appointment of the new Chair, Andy Frost, and they will be updating their Terms of Reference.
You can read more about their work on our website here.
A panel of involved residents approve our Community Funding – between April 2022 and March 2023 they approved £90,000 to support local organisations and projects. Ranging from local foodbanks to summer events for children, and community garden space to food-based projects.
Find out more about our Community Funding on our website here.
Customer Complaints Panel
We want our customers to be confident that we listen, learn and put things right.
We aim to provide a fair and effective resolution to all complaints and use the learnings to improve our services. If a customer is dissatisfied with the outcome of their complaint at stage one, they can escalate it to stage two.
Abri’s stage two complaints process lets the customer choose if their concerns are reviewed by a Senior Manager or by our independent customer panel. The independent customer panel is made up of customers who have volunteered and offered to review the complaint and make recommendations to Abri to put things right.
We’re looking for up to three more customers to join the independent customer panel.
Here’s the detail
The panel will review the complaint, Abri’s investigation and decide if our recommended outcome was correct or needs further remediation. They’ll do this within 20 working days unless further time has been agreed (e.g. if the panel or customer can’t meet). If more time’s needed the customer will be contacted.
Meetings are held face to face at one of our offices or using Microsoft Teams, depending on people’s availability, and location and expenses are covered.
How often you meet depends on how many stage two complaints we receive and how many customers choose to have their complaint reviewed by the panel. The panel has a maximum membership of five people, and you’ll work in pairs to review complaints. Once the panel membership is full we expect support no more than once a month.
The group will always handle the complaint sensitively and follow data protection guidelines. If there’s a safeguarding or vulnerable adults or child protection issue we do have a duty of care to investigate and follow appropriate procedures.
If you’d like more information about the panel or would like to join, please email CustomerRelations@abri.co.uk. There will be a short paper application first, and then we’ll shortlist people for an interview (which will be supported by the current members).
You said, we did
Hearing from our customers is really important, it helps us to understand when we get things right and when we need to do more. We always take feedback seriously, head to our webasite to see how we're making changes thanks to your input.
We can help with...
We're committed to and will provide practical and/or financial support to customers who:
Wish to form a resident's association for your local area
Would like some training to feel better equipped to get involved or scrutinise our services
Wish to exercise their Right to Manage
Would like to access our community investment funding opportunities - more information can be found here
We're proud to be members of Tpas, England’s leading resident engagement experts!
Tpas promote excellence in resident involvement and empowerment through training, advice and accreditation, representing 1700 tenant groups and 250 landlords. As Tpas members, we can access training for our residents and colleagues, learn from others, keep up to date with best practice, and work with likeminded social landlords to positively influence national policy.
Together with Tenants
We're working with other Housing Providers and the National Housing Federation on a sector-wide initiative focused on strengthening the relationship between housing association landlords and the people that live in their homes.
Abri are pleased to be ‘official adopters’, you can find more information on this initiative here - Together with Tenants.