Annual Report 2016

Over the period of a decade we have gone from taking on the management of 31,000 homes to being named as one of Europe's best businesses. It’s been a swift rise, and one that’s been built on a programme of significant investment in the environmental, social and economic regeneration of the Wakefield district and beyond to improve the lives of people.

Last year was no different, and our efforts were rewarded with yet more accolades and achievements. Having won EFQM’s European Excellence Award, our work in the community was also recognised with the WDH Academy, Cash Wise and our Work Placement Project all receiving national accolades.

We look forward to starting a new journey, becoming an enterprise with social impacts by 2020.

More than a landlord

2015 saw us mark 10 years in business and it was also the year in which we achieved our latest milestone - to offer tenants real choice and real opportunity.

Today we are much more than just a landlord, and our ventures both inside and outside of the Wakefield district continue to grow, helping us to continue to deliver more social impacts.

As we look to the future we must now build upon all we have achieved through the hard work and determination of our employees and community champions.

Tenant priorities

We strive to continually improve our services by making sure our work mirrors tenants' priorities.

These priorities are chosen following extensive consultation and engagement, along with feedback from our Tenant Survey. Priorities chosen to focus on last year were:

  • Tenants reading WDH Customer Charter Standards Keeping the
    promises we make
  • Tenants reading WDH Customer Charter Standards Making it easier for tenants
    to do business with us
  • Tenants reading WDH Customer Charter Standards Improve our tenants'
    repairs experience

Among the actions already undertaken, we have:

  • contacted all tenants who raised issues through the survey to ensure they have been resolved;
  • launched a campaign to raise the level of customer service provided and ensure our employees always give their name when speaking to tenants;
  • implemented a text messaging service to inform tenants of the name and phone number of the operative who will be attending their property; and
  • improved our internal systems to ensure that tenants are always kept informed when there is a delay in attending to a repair.

93% Satisfaction with our services

89% Satisfaction with repairs and maintenance service

90% Satisfaction with the overall quality of their home

86% Satisfaction with rents representing good value for money

Value for money

We aim to deliver VFM for all stakeholders by continually improving our performance, scrutinising the value created and the benefits delivered against our strategic objectives.

We consider VFM from four key perspectives:

  • Tenants reading WDH Customer Charter Standards Corporate
  • Tenants reading WDH Customer Charter Standards Community
  • Tenants reading WDH Customer Charter Standards Customer
  • Tenants reading WDH Customer Charter Standards Commercial

Our key financial achievements are:

  • Last year we secured £4.9 million cashable efficiencies against our business plan, which have been reinvested to achieve positive social outcomes, including providing more new homes and helping people into work. We plan to generate further cashable efficiency savings of at least £1.25 million in the coming year.
  • Our overheads are the lowest of all similar providers, amounting to just 7.54% of turnover compared to the average of 10.88%.
  • Last year it cost an average of £317 to maintain each of our 31,000 properties.
  • Our level of sickness absence is below the average reported by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development in their 2015 Annual Absence Management Survey.
  • We spent more than £40 million directly and indirectly with local businesses last year, helping to support, grow and sustain the local economy.
  • This year our regulator, the Homes and Communities Agency, has again awarded us the highest ratings in governance and financial viability as a result of our work to demonstrate how we provide value for money services.
  • Major improvement works
    £31.8 million
  • Cost sharing
    £6.2 million
  • Social investment
    £1.4 million
  • Services
    £6.8 million
  • Environmental improvements to estates
    £4.9 million
  • New build
    £27 million
  • Housing management costs
    £26.2 million
  • Community Safety
    £4.1 million
  • Repair costs
    £17.8 million

1441 Homes built or acquired since 2006

1164 Community engagement events held last year

£40m Spent with local businesses last year

The future

Tenant priorities 2016/2017

Our latest survey results have identified the following themes as the main areas for improvement which we will work on this year:

  • Keeping promises
    and commitments
  • The way in which WDH
    deals with repairs
  • being easy to
    deal with; and
  • dealing with nuisance
    and antisocial behaviour.

Future challenges

2016 marks the start of a new journey as we look towards achieving our next milestone - becoming an enterprise delivering social impacts.

Below are the challenges we will work towards alongside our tenant priorities for the coming year:

By March 2017

  • Further enhance our digital offer, promoting digital channels to tenants, customers and employees.
  • Consider introducing a WDH energy supply company or alternative energy switching solution for the benefit of both us and our tenants.
  • Define the Wakefield Estate Standard
  • To provide free internet access to tenants within the Wakefield district.
  • Develop a range of home ownership options including outright sale and shared ownership.
  • Review Care and Health service models.

89% Satisfaction of tenants with their neighbourhood

511 People helped by our Wellbeing Caseworkers

428 People helped into employment.

You can also read our full Annual Report (pdf)