Sovereign Housing
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Sheila Hayward

Sheila Hayward

Sheila is part of our resident-led Scrutiny Coordination Group (SCG), which commissions scrutinies within the business, to make sure we're providing quality services and a great experience to our customers.

She tells us more about the SGC’s most recent scrutiny, what she enjoys most about being part of the group and why she feels it’s so important that residents make their voices heard… 

I used to be a member of Spectrum’s Three Counties Forum and I joined the SCG for the same reason: to give something back and because I believe if we want changes to be made, we have to invest personal time.

Scrutiny Coordination Group

I really enjoy the interaction with other members and Jon and James, our Sovereign Scrutiny Officers.

My favourite moment was last year’s residents’ conference. We all did a video and presented slides explaining our roles in scrutinies and what our plans were going forward.

The SCG’s just put out its findings for the repeat repair calls scrutiny, where you looked at why residents are having to contact us more than once to get  a repair done. 

This issue appeared to impact lots of residents so we asked our resident Scrutineers to review why.

This scrutiny was very in-depth and involved:

  • 80 resident telephone surveys
  • 31 employee interviews, from Customer Contact and Property Services
  • 18 hours of call listening
  • 7.5 hours of job shadowing
  • 8 hours of analysing call data
  • 2 round table discussions
  • 2 welcome events
  • 1 customer focus group
  • 1 social media contact analysis session

You can watch our video about the results of the scrutiny’s findings here.

I was involved in last year’s south lettings scrutiny as one of the leads and I helped select Scrutineers.

I enjoyed meeting the Scrutineers and learning about their varied skill sets. I discovered that they’d all been involved in various groups within resident schemes before, and had lots of experience to offer. One of the Scrutineers, Don, has just joined the SCG.

As well as the Scrutiny Coordination Group, we have a Resident and Board Partnership group, which helps influence our strategy, policies and service standards, and Community Engagement groups, which work, with support from us, to make a difference in their communities.

I firmly believe we can only make changes from the inside, and when given the opportunity to be involved in groups that impact decision-making, we should seize the opportunity. 

It’s clear that one size doesn’t fit all, which is why there are different groups - we can all impact decision-making, and hold Sovereign to account, as well as influence social housing more widely.