Longhurst Group has completed the consolidation of all of its housing management systems into a single version of Civica’s HMS across the group. The project took nine months to complete and cost around £50,000.
The project extends back to 2009 when Longhurst was running five different HMS from three separate suppliers, spread across its four member companies comprising Friendship Care and Housing, Keystone Developments, L&H Homes and Spire Homes with a total of 17,800 properties between them.
Civica was chosen to supply the new HMS based on its longstanding relationship with the group and the preference of users and managers within its operational and ICT teams.
The first migration brought together Longhurst Homes, which was already using the Civica HMS, with Havelok Homes which used the Aareon HMS, into what is now L&H Homes following amalgamation.
A second project ran concurrently to integrate the main HMS following a stock transfer from Rutland Council, which was using a Capita HMS, to Spire Homes which was already running Civica.
The third phase covered the migration of Friendship Care and Housing to the same application set as L&H Homes and Spire. However, just as this was nearing completion, Friendship successfully bid to partner with Beechdale Community Housing and therefore required yet further system migration.
Having completed each of these steps, the number of systems and suppliers was reduced but each group company still had its own self-contained Civica HMS and workflow environment. The situation was complicated further with L&H Homes and Spire Homes sharing multiple servers for their test system while Friendship had its own. However, since the original implementations at Longhurst Homes and Spire Homes, the Civica system now included the option for multi-company processing so the move to a single, multi-company instance of the system was the final step.
The project has saved £60,000 from each upgrade which means that the costs of the multi-company application will be recouped in the first subsequent upgrade, alongside more intangible efficiency and productivity savings. There will be initial costs for the single set of servers to run the multi-company system but these costs are expected to be more than offset by not having to replace existing servers which were due for replacement.