Housing Partners – recognised as innovators in the sector
The 24 Housing Awards celebrate the very best that the housing sector has to offer and we are honoured and delighted to have been shortlisted this year for the Innovation of the Year award, sponsored by Liberty Group.
The nomination is for our flagship Housing Jigsaw PRAH (“Prevention, Relief, Accommodation & Homelessness”) module, designed and built in a unique collaboration with the National Practitioner Support Service (www.npsservice.org.uk) – a team of local authority housing practitioners who support the early intervention and prevention of homelessness in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
For those of you who are not aware of the background, the Homelessness Reduction Act is intricate legislation driving the most significant change to the delivery of homelessness services for over twenty years. The Act includes the challenge of actioning, recording and reporting outcomes. Government provided £9,000 to all LAs for implementation but £9,000 only covered the deposit some LAs were being asked for by their IT provider: not for the system upgrade but simply to ensure they were in-line when payable updates became available.
With many local authorities disillusioned by their IT service provider, we wanted to be the difference the market so desperately required. So, over the last year we’ve been working incredibly hard with NPSS to create PRAH.
PRAH is so much more than an IT system. Its uniqueness is based on the NPSS Flowchart © with inbuilt legislation, case law and guidance to ensure local authorities are not only familiar with the Homelessness Reduction Act but also ensure genuine compliance, whilst providing a train-the-trainer approach. PRAH’s intuitive customer and partner agency portals empower users to take control of their housing options and integrates partner agencies into the solution.
Furthermore, PRAH has been uniquely shaped by local authorities themselves. In September 2017, we offered PRAH free to all local authorities in England: an opportunity for them to not only test the innovation, quality and value of the module but intrinsically inform its build. Over 120 local authorities joined the free pilot – using PRAH to familiarise themselves with the forthcoming legislation, train their staff, test functionality and provide constructive suggestions for module enhancements.
Three months since the start of the Homelessness Reduction Act, the success of this approach is clear, as over 25% of local authorities have chosen to use Housing Jigsaw to deliver their front-line housing options and homelessness services – an achievement which is unparalleled in housing software development.
Housing Jigsaw PRAH is available to local authorities for just £9,000 per annum. This includes comprehensive system training, ten 360-degree case file reviews designed to support continuous improvement and ten training places on any NPSS training course. Future upgrades are inclusive – there are no hidden costs!
What’s the catch? Will the price double next year? Both have been asked by LAs surprised at our approach. Absolutely not is our answer. PRAH will continue to deliver unbeatable service and value for money for many years to come. And we aren’t stopping there; our Housing Jigsaw ALERT module is now available absolutely FREE. ALERT is a free module to support LAs and their partner agencies with referrals and notifications, commencing with the Duty to Refer from specified public bodies but we have already listened to our customers and widened this to include all agency referrals.
Innovative in development, structure and pricing, we are passionate about our fully rounded service and truly believe that Housing Jigsaw PRAH shows the way for future housing sector software. As the 24 Housing Awards say, “vision, innovation and passion are the keys to future success”.