Our leading housing association client was finding it hard to balance the requirements of its tenants with its need to generate income. Senior management thought frontline staff could provide crucial insights on service improvements but didn’t know how to capture these insights, identify the best ones and then turn them into action. So they turned to smartcrowds for help.
We quickly assembled a cross-company community (a smartcrowds ‘crowd’) of more than 500 idea contributors and collaborators, and gave them a three week challenge – how can we make services better for clients within existing corporate and financial constraints?
Fifty items of challenge ‘brain fuel’ were used to stimulate divergent, out-of-the-box thinking that would help generate genuinely new solutions to this long standing problem.
Knocking it out of the park
And the frontline staff didn’t let us down! Over 160 ideas were contributed, in just three weeks. Using the smartcrowds’ rapid selection and shortlisting tools, three high-impact, easy to implement quick wins were identified as well as five significant impact ideas to be developed as a phase two.
One of the ideas was to offer an ‘amnesty’ period allowing potential tenants immediate entry to difficult-to-let properties but with a requirement to demonstrate their eligibility within a prescribed maximum period. This innovative solution turned the tenant eligibility process on its head and perfectly answered the original challenge of improving tenant services while also helping to maximise revenues.
The association’s CFO was delighted: ‘smartcrowds helped us find solutions to problems that we had been wrestling with for years. We generated lots of ideas but the platform made it easy to identify which ones were most practical, would have the biggest positive impact on our tenants and give us the biggest return on our investment’.