Weaver Vale Housing Trust has cut its average void periods from seven weeks to four weeks following its implementation of Aareon’s QL Voids+ software earlier this year.
The housing provider originally implemented the Aareon QL housing management system in 2010, including the standard Aareon QL Voids Management module. However, following a value for money self-assessment exercise, Weaver Vale noted that its re-let times were increasing, with an average of seven weeks.
At the start of 2016, Weaver Vale started a project around the commercialisation of its re-letting and voids service, with the aim of improving visibility of the void data and void performance in general. One of the sub-projects was to implement the Aareon QL Voids+ module which went live in June 2016.
The upgrade from standard QL Voids to QL Voids+ needed commitment from Weaver Vale to involve the right people, to look at their data quality and to prioritise the QL Voids+ implementation.
Commenting on the implementation, Joanne Watkins, transformation manager, Weaver Vale Housing Trust, said, “Our advice would be to take a structured approach, have a clear plan, be very methodical about what you need to test, think about how it will impact on non-dwelling voids and test, test, test.”
Since the introduction of QL Voids+, re-let times are now down to an average of four weeks, and within the first month of using QL Voids+, Weaver Vale had four zero-day voids.
Sue Donovan, lettings team leader, said, “With QL Voids+, the progress of all voids is now clearly visible in one location so we can provide more effective and timely updates to our tenants and ensure our workloads are prioritised better. We can also record any properties allocated in zero days which will be rewarding to see and will act as a real motivator, as well as see the impact that specific properties have on our overall re-let times.”
Paul Newton, acting voids and improvements manager, said, “Moving to QL Voids+ has greatly improved the visibility of the data, helping us to identify blockages in the process. Staff are now aware that they are being more closely monitored which has resulted in increased accountability. The team had a great sense of achievement when the first zero-day voids were achieved together with improved re-let times.”