Swindon Borough Council has launched a new online repairs system for its tenants to make the process for reporting problems more efficient and convenient.
The system will let tenants choose appointments which suit them, including a slot which avoids the school run, and allows them to book repairs in advance. If their plans change, tenants can also change their appointments quickly online.
It used simple graphics and titles to help tenants navigate quickly and request repair jobs in a matter of minutes.
Tenants can access the repairs system now through My Housing Tenancy accounts. Around 4,300 tenants are already signed-up to My housing Tenancy, which also allows tenants to manage their rent payments and keep personal information up to date.
The Council’s Housing team will be holding a number of drop-in sessions for tenants who are interested in reporting repairs online but might not be as confident with computers or using the internet.
The first drop-in session will be held at Pinetrees Community Centre on Friday 9th November 2018 from 2pm until 4pm. A full list of sessions across Swindon will be available on the Council’s website and social media accounts.
The introduction of the online service follows the adoption of the Council’s new Customer Access Strategy. The strategy outlines the Council’s ambition to provide modern, efficient and effective services in line with current best practice across public and private sectors.
In the future the Council’s customer services team will be aimed at vulnerable residents who cannot access online services and all residents will be encouraged to go online to free up the phone lines for those who need them most.
Councillor Cathy Martyn, Cabinet Member for Housing and Public Safety, said: “We are very pleased to be able to offer this new system for our tenants, which will make reporting housing repairs much quicker and simpler and save our tenants valuable time.”
Councillor Keith Williams, Cabinet Member for Corporate and Customer Services, said: “This will be a fantastic tool for residents across the borough.
“It is an important step in supporting our ambitions to become a digital first council, and based on the positive feedback we received on our Customer Access Strategy, we will be giving residents the quick and easy digital customer services they have come to expect from elsewhere and clearly want us to provide.
“I would really urge everyone to use our online services where they can to free up our call centre staff so they can better help the vulnerable people who need their support the most. It is only a small minority of people who will never be able to use online services and we need to ensure they are either receiving assisted digital support or are well served in more traditional ways”
Tenants should still report emergency repair problems through customer services or call the out-of-hours number available online.
More information on the system is available at www.swindon.gov.uk/housingrepairs