Thank you to everyone who participated in the focus groups, surveys and one-to-one interviews which have helped shape The Barnet
Group’s new Customer Experience Strategy. Barnet Homes and Opendoor Homes residents played a key role in shaping the focus areas of the new strategy.

The new strategy outlines The Barnet Group’s strategic direction and priorities for customer experience over the next two years. The goals of the strategy are to have:

  1. Easy to access, responsive services
  2. Compassion for vulnerable customers
  3. Customer excellence central to all we do

Why these goals?
Our engagement with customers, colleagues and a review of insight such as complaints showed us that:

  • Lots of customers have a ‘right first time’ experience but some customers find it difficult to get the advice and assistance they need. Issues include long wait times when calling us and delays receiving responses to emails, having calls returned or having their repair or issue fully resolved.
  • Customers who have gone through traumatic experiences may find it difficult to contact us when they need assistance so it is really important that we help in the right way when they do contact us. Some vulnerable customers that we assist need additional support to navigate our services such as completing forms and applications.
  • Whilst we regularly receive positive feedback about our people and services, sometimes our customer care falls short and we don’t always fully consider customers when providing services or when we plan and communicate changes that will affect customers.

What will we focus on first?
We have developed a supporting action plan for the Customer Experience Strategy, the progress of which will be regularly reviewed by customers and senior managers.

Our key focus areas and activities for the first year (September 2022 to August 2023) are outlined below under each goal.

Goal 1. Easy to access, responsive services
Our focus areas for the first year will be to:

  • Have more Customer Service Officers and more Operatives working on gas repairs during the colder months when we have higher demand
  • Improve our systems to minimise issues for customers such as calls not connecting or being cut off
  • Give teams tools to resolve customer requests quickly and provide customers with updates where these will be helpful including when we know there will be a delay or other issues
  • Introduce call recording for all customer contact teams to regularly assess our customer care and the advice we provide
  • Increase our presence on estates and improve our responsiveness to estate issues including those regarding cleanliness and communal repairs
  • Provide residents with the ability to:
       – report their repair and book a repair appointment online
       – check planned future works to their home or block
  • We also want to provide tenants and leaseholders with the ability to check their balance online (we used to offer this for tenants but need a new system). We will review how we can do this next spring.

Goal 2. Compassion for vulnerable customers
Our focus areas for the first year will be to:

  • Provide training and improved guidance to teams who regularly assist vulnerable customers to improve how we engage with and support vulnerable people and people affected by trauma.
  • Improve our communications with vulnerable customers, including our housing advice letters and the communications that we send about rent arrears.
  • Set up a specialist Domestic Abuse Team to assist people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness because of domestic abuse.

Goal 3. Customer excellence will be central to all we do.
Our focus areas for the first year will be to:

  • Introduce customer care principles that all teams and contractors work to, focused on what customers have told us is important
  • Introduce regular customer focus groups to better understand how we can improve customer experience on an ongoing basis
  • Create opportunities to involve customers more when we are planning and communicating changes and events that will affect them
  • Create more opportunities to hear about the experience of the people supported by Your Choice (Barnet)
  • Address recurring issues that cause problems for customers such as rescheduled appointments for repairs.

What impact will these changes have for customers?
We have a suite of measures to assess the impact of the changes on customers and the people that we support. These include:

  • An increase in overall satisfaction with our services
  • More customers agreeing that we treat them fairly and with respect
  • More customers satisfied that we are easy to deal with
  • Less complaints about customer care
  • Less complaints about repair delays and other delays
  • Improved call and email response wait times

Would you like to help test our new online repairs service?
We are developing a repairs online self-serve option so that residents can diagnose their repair issue and book their repair appointment through our website, without having to call or email us.

Before we launch repairs self-serve to all residents, we will run a pilot session with a group of Barnet Homes and Opendoor Homes tenants. The pilot will allow us to test whether everything works and to make any improvements using resident feedback. We are aiming to start the
pilot in November 2022.

To make the pilot meaningful, we would like as many tenants as possible to participate. If you are a Barnet Homes or Opendoor Homes tenant and would like to help us test our repairs self-serve option please email our Customer Contact Team at or and include ‘I want to pilot repairs self-serve’ as the subject of your email.

We would also like customers to help us finalise our new customer service standards (timeframes for responding to certain enquiries) and our customer care principles (our promise about how we will provide customer care). If you would like to help us shape these please contact us at or and title your email ‘Customer Care Principles’.

When emailing us, please include your name, address and your tenancy or account number.

Thank you!