Your Voice - a new approach to customer involvement

Excellent customer service has always been at the heart of how Mears operates.
We have achieved high standards of customer service through our individual contracts and in localities – reflecting the importance of our client’s needs, and the local circumstances.

In 2011 a company-wide initiative was launched (The Change Club), whilst it had some success, there were objectives which remained incomplete.

In 2019, a review of The Change Club was undertaken and an internal project team set-up to develop and implement a new approach to customer involvement. There was external support and challenge from the Centre for Public Scrutiny.
Through our training we create proud and empowered colleagues delivering a trusted customer experience, shaped around feedback. We focus on delivering against customers emotional and practical needs.
Gary Jackson
Group Director of Marketing Communications and Customer Success

Mears Customer Charter

The Mears Customer Charter defines a set of promises. It protects our business and informs colleagues
of the company’s expectations of them, whilst providing reassurance to our customers of the desire we have to deliver exceptional service every time.

Your Voice

Customer engagement is part of our DNA - we work hard to ensure our customers can be heard and use their feedback to continually develop our service.

Your Voice is part of our Customer Involvement Strategy and aims to drive action from insight and advance service standards for Mears customers (whoever they are, wherever they live and whatever their circumstances), through customer-led scrutiny, challenge and support of Mears’ improvement plans and performance in these areas.

Your Voice sets the highest standards of customer involvement and engagement across the Group, leading the way nationally and delivering real benefits to all our customer groups – clients, colleagues, customers and local communities

The learning from the Scrutiny Panel and associated groups also promotes best practice and shared learning across the Group through insights, challenges and innovation.

Your Voice is made up of three component parts:

1. Mears Customer Scrutiny Board – An independently chaired panel of customer representatives working alongside the PLC Board and providing oversight, challenge and support to Mears. It will be supported and its independence assured by the Centre for Public Scrutiny.  

2. Mears Customer Champions Forum – Made up of our own Branch based customer engagement (or equivalent) leads plus other key stakeholders such as client scrutiny board chairs, resident association leads, community activists. This forum will create a link between the Scrutiny Board and our local involvement groups and scrutiny structures.

3. Mears Online Customer Network  A virtual network of residents from around the country, who opt into providing feedback on our services - provide insight into what’s important and what’s not - offer opinion and suggestions - validate and endorse our thinking/new initiatives.

Your Voice - Mears Customer Scrutiny Board

Mears is creating a new and independently chaired Scrutiny Board made up of customers representatives from around the UK to scrutinise, support and hold Mears to account as they seek raise service standards for all customers.

Purpose: To scrutinise, support and hold Mears to account as they seek to raise service standards for all customers.

Reporting to the Mears PLC Board, the Scrutiny Board works closely with the Customer Champions Forum and Online Network for evidence and insight into the issues it is investigating.

The Scrutiny Board is independently chaired. It is supported and its independence validated by the Centre for Public Scrutiny.

The board is made up of seven customer representatives who will represent:

  • The Repairs and Maintenance (social housing) and Housing Management parts of the business
  • The main regions that Mears works in and the diverse demographic, social and ethnic groups that make-up the Mears customer base

Senior representatives from Mears also attend including a PLC Non-exec director, senior customer involvement lead, senior operational lead.

Your Voice - Mears Customer Champions Forum

Purpose: Provide insight, ideas and gather evidence to inform and support the work of the Scrutiny Board and supporting Mears group customer involvement activity.

Working with the established network of Branch based customer engagement (or equivalent) leads,
the forum feeds into local customer involvement and scrutiny activities, either Mears-led or client-led.

Branch leads support in identifying and recruiting local customer champions such as client scrutiny board chairs, resident association leads, community activists and community leaders to be part of the Forum.

This happens virtually and via Customer Clinics and additional events attended by the Scrutiny Board Chair and representatives.

Your Voice - Mears Online Customer Network

Purpose: Provide an online forum on which Mears Scrutiny Board, and Mears Group, can have a two-way direct dialogue with customers

It will be the main online forum for customer involvement. The opportunity to join the Network will
be ongoing and a communications plan developed to promote it.

The focus will be providing online feedback and thoughts, they can also be used as a source of new members of both the Customer Champions Forum and the Scrutiny Board itself.

How we improve our service