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ASD Gateway 4 Housing Service. Jane Barlow Head of Housing Services. The Current Picture in Cornwall. Cornwall currently has two very separate delivery models: An Arms Length Management Organisation (ALMO) in the former district of Carrick (Carrick Housing) and

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Asd gateway 4 housing service
ASD Gateway 4Housing Service

  • Jane Barlow

  • Head of Housing Services

The current picture in cornwall
The Current Picture in Cornwall

Cornwall currently has two very separate delivery models:

  • An Arms Length Management Organisation (ALMO) in the former district of Carrick (Carrick Housing) and

  • An in house Landlord Service in east Cornwall.

The impact
The Impact

  • Tenants in Cornwall currently receive an unequal service.

  • The historic investment in the housing stock has also been uneven.

  • The Council is one of the largest landlords in the south west, however it does not act as strategically in the region or as effectively in its interaction with Government as it potentially could.

  • It has the potential to place greater competitive performance pressure on regional social housing providers.

Overview of housing services
Overview of Housing Services

Housing services currently delivered by East Cornwall Landlord Services and Carrick Housing

Looking to the future service delivery options
Looking to the future: Service delivery options

Detailed evaluation matrix developed with tenants scored the four options

Shaping the future
Shaping the Future

  • Since March 2011, Senior Leaders and Tenants have agreed to pursue the establishment of a single Council-owned company to:

  • include all existing functions currently provided by the Housing Service


  • Housing Strategy and Private Sector Housing which will remain in house

Headline benefits
Headline Benefits

  • A self-financed housing revenue account creates opportunities to make long term commitments to tenants about improvements to homes and services, and enables us to maintain high quality decent homes.

  • Be a high performing service meeting the standards previously defined by the Audit Commission as three star standard

  • Ability to maximise joint working opportunities between housing needs, housing options and private sector housing in terms of ‘shared customers’, improving the customer experience.

  • Ability to take new business opportunities, reduce costs and develop wider business options as result of collaboration with other council established ALMOs

Project approach

Alternative Service Delivery Board

Housing Project Board



Cross organisational teams


Cross organisational teams



Cross organisational teams


Cross organisational teams


Cross organisational teams


Project Approach

The housing service delivery perspective go live readiness
The Housing Service Delivery Perspective-Go Live Readiness

  • Business Case – Valid and unchanged by events

  • Contractual documentation and current phase completed

  • Contract management arrangements, reporting arrangements and working relationship

  • Processes and procedures in place to ensure long term success

  • Business contingency and continuity

  • Evaluated impact of unresolved risks, defects and issues

  • Learning points for future projects

  • Questions and Discussion

Business case
Business case

  • There is no change in in the Business Case and it is valid with the anticipated ‘Go Live’ date – 1st April 2012

  • The Client function (within Planning) on the commissioning side is in place and has acquired the necessary level of knowledge. Additional resources have recently been committed to planning from housing to increase capacity

  • The business case demonstrates sustainable delivery within the Council’s budget envelope for 2012/13.

  • Detailed financial planning has been undertaken with both the Council and the ALMO

Stakeholder engagement communications
Stakeholder Engagement & Communications

  • HTG 27 Feb 2012 with

  • Overview & Scrutiny

  • Cabinet (14/03/12) – democratic process held in public domain.

  • Regular newsletters to and briefings provided to both staff and tenants. Summary provided in Communities Directorate newsletter.

Stakeholder engagement communications1
Stakeholder Engagement & Communications

  • The Formal “Test of Opinion” in November 2011 showed that 67% of the respondents consented to the creation of the ALMO , 5% opposed, 3% sceptical and 26% neither consented or opposed.

  • Continued consultation with union officials.

  • Post “Go-Live” communications plan prepared and ready for implementation.

  • Regular highlight reports to CLT.

Contractual documentation
Contractual Documentation

  • ALMO Management Agreement (MA), Reserved Matters, Memorandum & Articles, and associated ‘schedules’ and leases are in the process being finalised.

  • Negotiations between the Council and ALMO have been robust and are ongoing and the Management Agreement etc. reflect these discussions.

  • Leases and MA have been reviewed and continue to be reviewed by the ALMO’s legal representatives and also by Independent Tenant Advisors.

  • Officers from services within the Council have commented upon, and influenced, the range of documents.

Contract management arrangements
Contract management arrangements

  • Reporting framework requirements are under development and will be detailed within the MA

  • A detailed Performance Management Framework is near completion

  • Client side function is in place

  • Its is the understanding both the ALMO and the Council that the relationship will be one of partnership and close collaboration

Processes and procedures in place to ensure long term success
Processes and procedures in place to ensure long term success

  • The Company Shadow Board comprising of 18 members is in place. The Council is represented by 6 Elected Members. Tenants are represented by 6 tenant members and 6 independent members also sit on the Board.

  • The Delivery Plan is near completion and is a Five year plan with annual reviews.

  • There will also be the continuation of a strong performance management culture.

Processes and procedures in place to ensure long term success cont
Processes and procedures in place to ensure long term success (cont)

  • A transition structure is being put into place for day one, with the Senior Management team being put into place.

  • Within the first year of operation, plans to review the organisational structure will be progressed.

  • Appropriate policies for safeguarding, employee relations, equality and diversity etc already exist and will be reviewed during year one to ensure they meet the needs of the new company and are in line with the Council policies and best practice.

Business contingency and continuity
Business contingency and continuity success (cont)

  • Business continuity plans have been prepared. Business interruption insurance will be in place (or covered by the Council – dependant upon the premium quotes obtained).

  • If the ALMO should fail to deliver the service and this cannot be rectified, the service delivery (and staff) will return to the Council.

  • The ALMO reserves policy being reviewed to ensure that the appropriate level is maintained.

  • Any new activity carried out by the company (for example new builds housing) will be subject to a detailed business case and approval by the Council.

  • An annual review of the business plan and management fee will be performed to ensure that both meet the needs of the Council and its Housing strategy as well as the needs of the company.

Evaluated impact of unresolved risks assumptions and issues
Evaluated impact of unresolved Risks, Assumptions and Issues success (cont)

  • The project has a both a Risk Register and Assumptions and Issues Register.

  • All Risks, Assumptions and Issues have been reviewed and mitigated and there are no Risks/Issues/assumptions that will negatively impact the Go-Live date of 01 April 2012.

  • These will be continued to tracked and reviewed on a weekly basis and should a situation arise which merits attention this will be escalated to shadow Board and to the weekly project group run by the Director of Communities.

Learning points for future projects
Learning Points for Future Projects success (cont)

  • Have clearly defined goals and ensure that all relevant services understand desired outcomes.

  • Create the Project Implementation Plan as early as possible to avoid unrealistic expectations.

  • Communicate the benefits of the changes to staff.

  • Divide the project into manageable workstreams.

  • Delegate responsibilities to key lead officers

  • Ensure that all the appropriate officer expertise is involved in the progress of the project.

  • Recognise the relevant knowledge held by officers at every level of the service; from the front line to senior managers.

  • Maintain consistency of representation within the project teams.

  • Keep a record of action points and decisions agreed at each meeting.

  • Communicate well utilising face to face meetings, email and shared drives.

  • Only limit the sharing of information when it is appropriate to do so.

Questions and discussion
Questions and Discussion success (cont)