Your Homes Newcastle - Hive Customer Story

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Aligning the Tenant and Employee Experience

In recent years, radical organisational change has been demanded of UK social housing providers.

To share how a housing association is engaging their people post-business transformation and letting employees shape their own experience, we speak to Lisa Ainscough, Policy and Business Support Officer, at Your Homes Newcastle.
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In 2016, Your Homes Newcastle (YHN) began the review and restructuring of their organisation.

This ongoing transformation was designed to overcome sector challenges and increase service efficiency for tenants living in over 26,000 properties across Newcastle upon Tyne. As a result, YHN’s workforce (approx. 700 employees), have experienced a long period of organisational change.

And while YHN work to provide a ‘safe, secure and positive’ living experience for their tenants, they also strive for an employee experience that reflects these positive qualities – motivating their people to perform at their best.

Asking the right questions, at the right time

YHN’s partnership with Hive began in 2018; Lisa Ainscough, Policy and Business Support Officer at YHN, wanted to give employees a confidential channel to voice their feelings post-transformation and influence business strategy.

Choosing Hive for its flexibility around survey frequency and format, YHN sought to carefully embed employee surveying into their culture by sending short quarterly surveys, which would also give managers ample time to review people data, action change and evidence results to employees.

YHN’s surveys have gathered sentiment around organisational values, support services, the quality of internal communication and the manager/employee relationship, while also measuring employee happiness and satisfaction.

“We initially brought in Hive to support the implementation of our business strategy as we wanted to check that we were doing things right by employees. In a relatively short time, we have started to see the benefits of regularly giving employees the opportunity to tell us what they really think and can now feed real workforce insights into our wider corporate plans.”

Lisa Ainscough, Policy and Business Support Officer, Your Homes Newcastle

Translating insights into action

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Examples of how YHN have taken positive action in response to survey feedback include:
  • Making senior leaders and managers more visible by launching the Corporate Leadership blog, and planning quarterly ‘Spotlight on’ sessions.
  • Delivering an annual conference aimed at celebrating YHN successes, sharing the future vision and giving employees a rare opportunity to meet with other colleagues across the business.
  • Creating a culture of recognition by unlocking and customising the Hive-Five peer-to-peer recognition feature, which saw 221 public messages of recognition come through in 30 days of launching.
  • Improving managerial understanding of employee engagement through dedicated People Science workshops; Hive’s People Science team continue to upskill YHN managers in analysing and actioning employee feedback.

“Our people highlighted how much they valued recognition, and so we have now unlocked and customised our Hive-Five peer-to-peer recognition feature (‘YHN Shout-outs’). It’s uplifting to see colleagues publicly recognising their peers; we had 221 shout-outs come through in 30 days of launching, which our MD is enjoying reading. We are really hopeful that recognition will now become the norm at YHN, and not the exception.”

Lisa Ainscough, Policy and Business Support Officer, Your Homes Newcastle