The Gateshead Housing Company has a strong commitment to value for money, which is reflected in the business plan and in service-delivery plans.
What is value for money?
Contrary to how it sounds, value for money isn’t just about saving money! It is about ensuring that the business is efficient, effective, and economical.
This is a measure of productivity – how much you get out in relation to what you put in. It is the efficiency of converting resources (inputs) into results (outputs).
This measures the impact of obtaining value for money. It can be quantitative (the amount of effectiveness) or qualitative (the value of effectiveness).
This is the price paid (the impact on people as well as actual money spent) for providing a service at best value, taking price and quality into account.
What we do to secure value for money
It is our aim to continually assess opportunities to enhance our services to customers and actively involve our employees and customers to achieve value for money.
We continually look for the best value for money by sourcing the best materials at the best price. And we’re always looking for ways to make our services work more efficiently and effectively.
There is a culture of “do the right things” and “do things right”, helping ensure our service delivery is efficient, effective and economical.
Who monitors whether we provide value for money
The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) standards state that we must demonstrate:
- How we have ensured value for money has been secured and tested
- Our plans and priorities for delivery of further value for money improvements.
The Gateshead Housing Company is a member of the HouseMark benchmarking group, which helps social housing landlords compare the costs of service delivery, resources and key performance indicators across all areas of the business.
Benchmarking is conducted annually to analyse all areas of the business and is used to identify high performing, low cost services.
Using the HouseMark annual benchmarking exercise results, the organisation can plan to target those areas that are low performing and high cost.
Services will be expected to use benchmarking information to learn from best practice, change procedures and processes to achieve enhanced methods of working, and reduce unnecessary expenditure.
Examples of where we have achieved Value for Money
Evaluation of Wrekenton Hub 2015/16
- Since relocating to the new Hub there has been a reduction in running costs of £6,700 over the nine-month period since April 2015.
VFM Cost saving
Cyclical maintenance and compliance – end of third quarter 2015/16
- Warranty management – investigation of warrantied light fittings to nine multi-storey blocks identified a 22% failure rate. This has resulted in an agreement with the manufacturer to fund labour and materials cost
- This represents a saving of £2,632 since the agreement was formalised on 5 January 2016
- Extended warranty period to be negotiated
- Further funding for energy-efficient LED replacement units also being explored with Gateshead Council’s climate change.
VFM Cost saving, effective & efficient service delivery
Repair and maintenance contract – end of third quarter 2015/16
- Average time to let properties is 55.77 days, which is a reduction of 19.92 days compared to 75.69 days in quarter three of 2014/15
- The pre-planning of external repair works issued to Construction Services has continued to minimise the number of variations populated while also improving the communication between the partners
- Procedures and roles are to be considered to establish any areas of efficiency in an aim to minimise duplication of works.
VFM Effective & efficient service delivery
VFM Cost saving – properties potentially being let earlier