Celebrating National Customer Service Week
The week, we’re celebrating some of the great work our colleagues are doing to make a difference to our customers lives.
It’s National Customer Service Week (NCSW) from 2 October to 6 October 2023. The week provides us with a fantastic opportunity to shine a spotlight on the importance of customer service and celebrate all the great work our colleagues do to support you.
At One Manchester, we make it a point to celebrate this week every year. Our priorities are crystal clear: People, Place, Prosperity. People are at the heart of everything we do, whether they're our valued customers or our dedicated colleagues. We’re working to improve the services we offer by listening to your views, recognise our colleagues’ hard work and achievements, and show our commitment to delivering excellent customer service.
We've collated some inspiring stories that showcase how our colleagues go that extra mile to help our customers. From ensuring a customer gets a new sofa and freezer to helping a family find a new home, these stories demonstrate our dedication to making a positive impact for our customers when they need it most.
Avoiding a crisis
With the rising cost of living, it is more important than ever that we make our money stretch further. Recently a customer who was struggling with debt reached out to colleagues in our Financial Inclusion team for advice and support. The team worked with the customer to find out what their issues were and put together an action plan to help tackle them.
Unfortunately, the customer didn’t have a fridge/freezer, which made their food expenses high, didn’t have a washing machine, which meant they couldn’t regularly do laundry and they also needed to attend weekly hospital appointments by taxi because they couldn’t travel by public transport. The Financial Inclusion team worked with the customer to find relevant support and apply for funding.
The customer received financial support for travel costs, white goods and new bed. They were delighted and grateful for the support and guidance, which prevented a crisis, and as a result, they’re now in a much better place.
Our Financial Inclusion team is here to help, offering support, advice, and guidance.
A weight off my shoulders
A customer who had struggled with addiction over many years and previously experienced homelessness, living on the streets, was referred to us and moved into one of our homes. Due to their addiction issues, they continued to struggle with debt. The customer received letters detailing their debt on their electricity meter, which amounted to £1414.92. The debt, in addition to their everyday struggles with addiction became overwhelming for the customer and they felt hopeless and unable to manage their new home.
Our team were happy to help the customer get to the bottom of the issues. We worked with the them to investigate the fee charges, whilst sat waiting for the energy company, to find out what the issue was, the customer explained they were currently waiting to go into a Rehabilitation Unit – this demonstrated a level of trust and confidence in not only the colleague but also in the service they provided.
After looking into it, the energy provider admitted they were wrong. They said sorry for the bad service and found out the customer owed just £74.02 when they checked the smart meter.
The customer was really grateful for the support they received saying said: “I feel like a massive weight has been removed from my shoulders”.
Please don't suffer or struggle alone, our Support and Wellbeing team is here to help.
Removing a threat
One of customers was being cuckooed in their home, cuckooing is defined as when ‘dealers will take over a local property, normally belonging to a vulnerable person, and use it to operate their criminal activity from.’
The customer's Community Safety Specialist got involved to help. They attended safeguarding meetings with partners, gained the trust of the vulnerable customer and working closely with agencies to develop solutions to help protect them from further harm and remove the threat.
The Community Safety Specialist’s work led to successfully securing a ‘without-notice injunction’ to remove the threat from the home and to the customer. They decided they didn’t want to leave their home and so were now able to return with added protection, knowing they can trust One Manchester to support them.
The customers GP said: "I’d like to send my sincere thanks to the Community Safety Specialist for their continued pro-active support and kindness to the clients we’re working with, it means a great deal to both me and the practice."
Our Community Safety team work hard to support you to feel safe and secure in your homes.
Rehousing a family
Recently, two of our Neighbourhood Officers helped a customer who were struggling, with seven of them living in a one-bedroom home. The Dad had moved to the UK, fleeing violence in his home country, with the intention of his family joining him as soon as they could.
The dad has misunderstood the situation and through desperation, accepted and moved into a one-bedroom property, because they were unaware that it would prove difficult to be rehouse into a larger home when his family arrived.
When his family arrived in the UK, they moved into the one-bed property and were informed of the long wait times to get a bigger home. The father’s mental health deteriorated during this time and the case was flagged to us by a partner agency.
This is when our Neighbourhood Officers got involved, visiting the family to gain a better understanding of their circumstance and understand what could be done. It was obvious from the meeting that something needed to be done to help the family as quickly as possible.
Instead of having to go through the usual process, our Neighbourhood Officers were able to fast track the case and get the family rehoused into a larger property. The Neighbourhood Officer said: “The joy and relief in all their faces was clear to see when they returned the keys.”
Your Neighbourhood hubs and officers are here to help.
Our ongoing commitment to dealing with damp and mould
In December 2022, we provided a report to the Regulator of Social Housing on how many of our homes had cases of damp and mould. To date, the majority of repairs have been completed for our customers, making sure your home is a safe and healthy space.Posted 04 Aug 2023