Digital Housing Needs project sprint four

Sarah Piercy, Thursday 21 July 2022

That’s a wrap for sprint 4. How fast is this moving! 

We continued our focus on quantitative and qualitative data for the web content alpha and we welcomed our new Senior Agile Delivery Manager to the team. It was a shorter sprint due to holidays with the Rough Sleeper Pathway and Accessing Temporary Accommodation alphas. Even so, a lot has been completed in a short period of time! 

Here’s how sprint 4 shaped up: 

First contact  

  • Social media posts were sent out asking for volunteers for the user interviews for the web content research
  • Within the social media posts, there is a link to the sign-up form and this is shown as a QR code on the posters that have been sent out to hostels, partners, libraries and Redbridge reception areas
  • So far we have had limited interest but we have publicised the incentive and are looking at different ways of accessing volunteers
  • Any interest that we receive is checked against Northgate OHMS as we are looking for residents in temporary accommodation and rough sleepers in the first instance, although we are also interested in talking to leaseholders and council tenants

Web content design 

  • We evaluated the ‘homelessness and rough sleepers’ web page - mapping the various journeys on the page and looking at web content on other council websites
  • This page seems to be one of the pages that hasn’t been reviewed since migration to the current content management system in 2016
  • We also looked at the housing advice and options stage of the content journey, which included looking at Google Trends to understand which search terms are being used

Rough Sleeper Pathway 

  • The Theory of Change for the Rough Sleeper Pathway was approved and signed off
  • Rough Sleeper data was received from our partners. We need to follow up on this as part of the next sprint to get information on floating support and handoff but the data received has given us a good foundation to build upon
  • The Council has received funding for ten Buyback Properties, which will be let on a two year non-secure basis to rough sleepers. How they will be recorded and managed was reviewed during this sprint, with data being held within both TASYS (Temporary Accommodation property system) and Northgate OHMS. 

Accessing Temporary Accommodation 

We held a Housing Management and Housing Needs Accessing Temporary Accommodation workshop at Lynton House on 4 July 2022. This was a face to face workshop with representation from Housing Needs, Housing Management and IT Support and looked at the end to end process for accessing temporary accommodation by housing management as part of an emergency or for decant purposes, as part of property improvements. 

There were some key themes that came out of the session and some very positive feedback, with many people asking for more similar sessions, as it gives different teams a chance to talk to each other about key processes and associated issues: 

  • No clear signposting 
  • Detailed information about the applicant is needed up front 
  • Expediate decisions to support the customer 
  • Major works planning is essential 
  • Be honest about what can and will be done 
  • There are existing systems to enable shared information and communications 

There were also some take-aways from the session that we will begin to work on as part of sprint 5: 

  • Text First (for text messaging to customers, currently used by Income Recovery) 
  • Development of a property amendment form (for changes to council property structures to make the most effective use of our limited stock) 
  • Northgate OHMS functionality (clarity on what the application can do which isn’t currently being exploited) 
  • The Temporary Accommodation Theory of Change has been started and there will be more work to focus on the ideas, actions and measurements as part of this next sprint

Next sprint 

Our planned activities for the next sprint are: 

First contact 

  • Further push for volunteers through Ryedale visit and upcoming Estate Days with the Resident Engagement team 
  • Waiting for more ‘volunteers’ to sign up 
  • Arranging and running research interviews 

Web content design

  • Prototyping homelessness and rough sleepers web content 
  • Prototyping new housing advice and options landing page 

Rough sleeper pathway

  • Demo of rough sleeper module in HOPE 
  • Process for data sharing with partners in the short term (up to six months pipeline) 
  • Understand and evaluate partner data 

Accessing temporary accommodation

  • Identify themes from the Temporary Accommodation workshop to prototype 
  • Finalise the Temporary Accommodation Theory of Change  

Watch the sprint four Show and Tell 


The next Digital Housing Needs show and tell is planned for Tuesday 2 August. 

Find out more 

For more information about the Digital Housing Needs programme, get in touch with us via Twitter @lbrdigitalvoice 

View all Redbridge Digital Housing Needs Show and Tell videos 

Previous sprint notes: