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12 New Mart Road
"It opens up the entire world even if you're not able to get out of your own flat."
"I am nearly 90 years old and have ignored the digital world long enough. I now feel I should give it a go and will try the training sessions so I can skype my family in Canada and France “
"I am finding it great, it’s like looking up an encyclopedia and you can find anything you want to know. Wonderful!"
“Tenants can now communicate with Trust Housing digitally should they choose. They will be able to report repairs, view rent accounts, make complaints, apply for housing etc. As part of our digital strategy we will adopt a self-service approach for those who want to communicate in this way. This will free up front line resources and we can then direct them to where they are most required, reducing void loss and days to let.
“It was great to be a part of Trust Housing's digital participation project. Every stakeholder involved in the project; from their ICT team and community teams to their residents have been co-operative and supportive for the project's success. They continue to assist us to build the networks and services that'll meet the needs of their connected, online Trust communities across Scotland.
Berkshire SL6 8BY
Established in 1995, Housing Solutions is a leading provider of affordable homes in the South East. They own, manage and maintain more than 8,000 homes in Maidenhead, Wokingham and Slough.
They initially approached us to supply their landlines but have since followed this up with a digital inclusion project to install wifi in 4 sheltered schemes -with up to 6 more to follow suit.
We liked Social Telecoms because they were not like normal sales people. In particular, we were impressed by the pricing they provide to PfH members. They have worked out significantly cheaper – we have saved in excess of 25%. We also like the social aspect of what Social Telecoms do as it fits in with our own values.
This is a good example of a relationship that's blossomed. They have recognised the value of the PfH framework and our ultra low pricing demonstrated how we made them significant savings.
We are keen to make as many of our services available through online portals as this reduces the cost to us of a resident making contact by 90% compared to staffing a call centre and maintaining freephone numbers. It also becomes possible to run a 24/7 service - which is far more convenient for working residents.
We have an award-winning repair service and have invested significantly in it. Our new website will make it possible to see our repair staff's schedules live when booking an appointment. We are also looking at making available prime appointment slots - the first and last of the working day - exclusively available online to incentivise further take-up of the online service by residents. But this is only worth doing if enough residents are online - which is why Social Telecoms' digital inclusion programmes are vital to the success of this project.
Old Potts Way
Shropshire SY3 7FA
While price was a key factor in the decision to award the contract, Severnside also recognised that Social Telecoms could bring added value by using this partnership to ensure that residents have access to online services, without which they may simply not be able to manage their benefits and rent payments.
The Digital Den is a model that can be rolled out to other Registered Providers of Social Housing. As a social enterprise, we don't pay a dividend to shareholders or owners, so the surplus from the corporate contracts we offer to housing association is invested back in the community, while still offering excellent value and the latest technology.
2 Emperor Way
Doxford International Business Park
Tyne & Wear SR3 3XR
Gentoo Group, based in Sunderland are one of the largest providers of social housing in England, with some 30,000 homes and over 70,000 customers in the North East area. Each Procurement decision is guided by the Group's Procurement Principles; price, quality and added value is important. So when they were looking for a new supplier for their mobile and fixed line call services, Social Telecoms came out on top thanks to having the lowest price and the social value package we were able to provide.
They were looking to switch the contract for their c.1500 mobile phones, tablets and dongles and all corporate fixed line calls. As part of the overall package they will also receive a digital inclusion fund to be spent as they see fit on Wi-Fi for tower blocks, computer kiosk terminals and Windows PCs.
Rolling Mill Road
Tyne and Wear NE32 3DP
Social Telecoms has just announced its largest ever digital inclusion project to bring the benefits of low-cost internet access to housing association tenants. South Tyneside Homes, based in South Shields, have placed the £900,000 order for wifi at 26 sheltered housing schemes across the borough as well as web-based CCTV, computer suites, kiosk terminals, printers and telecare.
The deal was secured through the PfH Framework Agreement, a buying consortium for housing associations that ensures its members not only get the benefits of combined purchasing power but also that suppliers pass stringent quality and service standards. By overseeing the whole process, PfH also ensures that any agreements are fully compliant in EU procurement law.
This is the biggest project we've ever undertaken, but the main beneficiaries are going to be the residents themselves. Around 70% of social housing tenants have no internet access, compared to 27% of the population as a whole, and South Tyneside Homes are one of a growing number of housing associations who recognise this puts them at a massive disadvantage financially and socially.