Coastline Housing Aiming High

Coastline Services (CSL) is the commercially focused contracting arm of Coastline Housing, who provide just over 4,300 properties spread throughout Cornwall. Initially looking for a system to improve the accuracy and speed of job cost information within CSL the business selected Service Connect from Cloud Dialogs.

Barry Cox, Project Manager for Coastline, explains how the project expanded. “As the business began to understand what Service Connect offered, it became clear that it should manage everything relating to property maintenance, not just the in-house workforce. The client side of the business contracts large amounts of work directly and this process could be dramatically improved by extending Service Connect through the business.”

Coastline also has a very strong focus on delivering self-service options to its customers, with repair appointments being an important component in the total solution. A proof of concept was completed to ensure there would be no technical issues embedding Service Connect into Coastline’s MS Dynamics CRM solution – also Cloud based, so that there wouldn’t be any delays in delivering this capability.

The decision was made to implement a first phase within Coastline Services and to deliver this as quickly as possible. From contract signing to go-live was just 20 weeks, addressing responsive and minor planned repairs. Day 1 of go-live included direct integration to Jewson, saw over 20 sub-contractors using the contractor portal, full mobilisation of Coastline’s in-house operatives, appointment booking embedded into Dynamics CRM and tight integration to the businesses two SUN Accounts systems.

Despite the aggressive timescale and broad scope, particularly including the integration into two separate SUN Accounts systems, Chief Executive Allister Young told staff “this has been the smoothest transition and go-live I have experienced in my career and should set the bar for future IT projects”. Barry says the contact centre staff can’t believe how quick and easy it is to book and schedule repairs appointments and that operatives are responding well to the demands of the new process.

Service Connect is designed around giving individual managers and supervisors dashboards that show them anything that needs attention in real time, this has led to a change in culture where processes and issues are managed as they arise and creates much greater transparency across the business.

Spurred on by the success of the first phase, Project Manager Barry Cox is already delivering on the next phase of the project, having added contracts for Fire Risk Assessment Remedial Works, before rolling out Voids, Kitchens & Bathrooms, Cleaning, Grounds Maintenance and Painting programmes to fulfil the organisation’s ambition of a single system to manage the entire repairs and maintenance business.