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Scrutiny Panel

What is scrutiny?

 

Scrutiny is form of resident involvement which scrutinises the services which Aragon provides, from the perspective of residents.

It involves a Scrutiny Panel of Aragon residents (tenants, leaseholders and shared owners) being asked by others (Aragon residents, management, Board and Customer Committee) to review a service if there are concerns about how it is operating or if it is thought it could be improved.

The Scrutiny Panel plays a large part in ensuring the success of Aragon, including:

  • holding Aragon to account for the performance of the services it provides
  • defining what level of services residents want
  • assisting the Aragon Board in setting targets for services provided by Aragon
  • assisting Aragon in reviewing services that will provide future direction for the organisation
  • participating in Aragon governance at Board level by reporting on reviews and making recommendations
  • communicating its work and findings with Aragon customers e.g. via the customer newsletter, Intouch or the Aragon website.

 

Each Scrutiny review involves a presentation being given on the service to the Panel, after which the Panel reviews any information which is available, then the Panel gathers resident feedback on the service.  This could be via questionnaire's, focus groups or at other events etc.  after which, they evaluate the feedback and produce a report and recommendations on how what improvements could be made to the service.

The Panel works independently from other forms of involvement and makes its own decisions on which reviews are carried out, based on the requests it receives.

The Panel will then make a decision on which reviews will be carried out and in which order. If a request is submitted from Aragon residents, it must be supported by a minimum of 50 tenants / leaseholders / shared owners.

What has the Scrutiny Panel done so far?

So far, the Panel has completed three reviews.

The first review was on the bathroom refurbishment programme and looked at how it works from a resident's perspective.  The review included learning about the current service provision and talking to residents, officers and  contractors about the service.  The majority of feedback was positive, however some of the recommendations to improve the service include:

  • Improve communication with residents when bathroom refurbishments are due to take place

  • Improving information to residents on a wider scale about the bathroom refurbishment process and what bathroom options are available

  • To implement checklists where necessary to ensure all aspects of a bathroom review are covered and residents know what will happen 

  • Contractors to wear photo ID at all times

 

The second review was on resident's understanding of the role of the housing officer and how they can be accessed.  The key recommendations from this review include:

  • Ensuring information on housing officers and their role is kept up-to-date on the Aragon website

  • Ensuring that information is consistent across a range of formats e.g. leaflets, website etc

 

The third review was on how Aragon can effectively provide information to it's residents.  This was as a result of a question on how we currently provide information and the increasing use of electronic means of communication.  Further details of this report and action plan will be available once it has gone through the reporting process and been approved.

 

Scrutiny Panel Membership

The Scrutiny Panel can have a maximum of 10 members  - 8 tenants, one leaseholder and one shared owner.

Scrutiny Panel members don’t need any qualifications, as full training and support will be provided to enable them to fulfil their role, however any previous experience you may have will be considered during the selection process.

Currently we have spaces for 1 resident, 1 leaseholder and 1 shared owner on the Panel.

 

Support

Aragon will cover expenses incurred by residents during their work on the Scrutiny Panel.  This can include:

  • travel costs / providing transport to attend meetings
  • expenses for care or childcare costs
  • provide or cover the cost of stationary etc to carry out the role

 

Requesting a scrutiny review

If residents think a particular service should be reviewed, they will need to submit information to the Scrutiny Panel. They will need to complete a form that gives details of the request for a scrutiny review, along with a petition form, which requires names, addresses and signatures of a minimum of 50 residents. 

A scrutiny review involves looking at an existing service. They look at information available on the service and talk to Aragon staff, contractors and tenants about the service. This information is compared with other housing associations' services. 

What happens when a scrutiny review has been completed?

Once the review is complete, a report is written with recommendations on how to improve the service. Each Scrutiny review will look at good aspects of the service as well as areas which could be improved.

The final report will go to Aragon's management and Customer Committee for information, and Aragon's Board for approval. All agreed recommendations will be monitored by Customer Committee until they have been implemented.

How can I get involved?

If you are interested in joining the Scrutiny Panel or would like any more information on the work of the Panel, please contact Sasha McGregor, Community Consultation Officer on 01525 844510 or at sasha.mcgregor@aragon-housing.co.uk

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