Highlights

10K

Properties

£1M

Improvement in collections

101.9%

Collection rate from 100.2% to 101.9%

A short conversation with Enfield Council’s Head of Income and Debt, Geoff Waterton and Income Manager, Zhensheng Chen about how they have used and benefited from RentSense.
Mobysoft:

Before RentSense how did Enfield manage rent arrears?

Zhensheng Chen:

Prior to RentSense the system we used would create several thousand alerts a week, many of which did not need contact. For the staff it’s demotivating spending time on alerts that require no action.

Mobysoft:

I realise rising arrears and Universal Credit were the driving force for underaking a discovery day, which calculated the impact of RentSense on your organisation. What was the impression of the senior management team on the findings?

Geoff Waterton:

We were impressed from the beginning. Mobysoft came back with a business case stating how arrears would fall, and by how much, and articulated what efficiencies RentSense would deliver. It’s unusual that a company will give you hard figures and stand by it and back it up. It was clearly explained how the implementation manager would work with us on the deployment and how the account director would ensure that RentSense met the agreed business case.

Mobysoft:

When you went live there was a 60% caseload reduction whar was the feedback from the income team?

Geoff Waterton:

We worked with Mobysoft and we changed the way we work in readiness for RentSense, and straight away staff embraced the system. They could see the benefits and they were able to complete their arrears alerts every week, which before was just not possible. As a result, there has been more subtle benefits too, staff turnover has reduced as job satisfaction has increased

Mobysoft:

RentSense is also flagging cases that are in credit which the team are working through these, why are these important?

Early intervention is that key bit of work that will reduce evictions and allow council officers to target intervention work as early as possible.”

Geoff Waterton, Enfield Council
Enfield Council discuss using RentSense
Geoff Waterton:

If you don’t make contact early on it becomes increasingly difficult to resolve the situation as tenants can become more difficult to engage with as debt problems increase. That intervention is fundamental to managing arrears as cases are and become incredibly complex. That is why RentSense is so effective. In 2019/20 so far, and we are ten months in, we have not evicted anyone for arrears.

Mobysoft:

You mentioned that RentSense is also helping the council strategically, could you expand on that?

Geoff Waterton:

The council’s three strategic aims are good homes in well-connected neighbourhoods, sustain strong and healthy communities and build our local economy to create a thriving place. RentSense feeds into all of these. It is helping sustain tenancies and support tenants in a way that was simply not possible before, and we have more funds to reinvest into the HRA to give people better homes

Mobysoft:

Is the reporting of benefit to you both?

Geoff Waterton:

We can see how officers are progressing with their workload. It is an effective management system for us. From every aspect it has been incredibly well drilled. Income officers have embraced the new system and wprking method, as managers it gives us the information we need and it has helped improve performance, and from an IT perspective it has removed a lot of work. It is easy to use and implement. Often with IT systems you find staff asking IT for support or raising concerns the system is not working, we have none of that with RentSense

Mobysoft:

So how has RentSense impacted the bottom line for the council?

Geoff Waterton:

“Since we deployed RentSense our collection figures have improved by over £1m year on year, going from 100.18 to 101.86%. Our arrears are falling for the first time in four years and evictions are down. I think that demonstrates the effectiveness of RentSense,

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