echelon was commissioned by Homes for Haringey to undertake two reviews of its direct labour organisation, Haringey Repair Services (HRS), which comprises a responsive repairs team (including the repairs control centre); a planned works team (which includes void works) and a finance services team.
Following a rigorous stakeholder engagement programme in 2012 echelon made a series of recommendations for developing HRS which led to cashable savings in the region of £2.9 million and a fall in operating costs from £19.4 million to £16.5 million. Four years later echelon carried out a second two-stage review to ascertain how the recommendations from 2012 had been implemented and focus on the future delivery of the repairs service.
While performance had greatly improved and the recommended policies and procedures from the 2012 review were all in place, they weren’t always followed. echelon provided a detailed report making recommendations to ensure that the procedures were implemented properly, and a service improvement plan was developed identifying 16 key areas with target dates set against priority. There is now a greater focus on communication with contractors and the contact centre and the new ICT system is allowing HRS to make great strides in terms of mobile working and more effective use of materials.
“It is not about management and consultants implementing change, which is what had happened in the past when reviews had been carried out. With echelon it is about engaging with all of our staff and getting them on board to change the culture for the future.”