Stonewater is an ambitious social housing provider, with a mission to deliver good quality affordable homes to people who need them most. The Hubb was created as an online self-help community to give these customers a voice.
Our client now has an established community of customers who help each other and engage with the organisation in a positive, safe and interactive environment.
Bearing in mind that Stonewater have an extensive customer base, they needed to establish an engaging, vibrant online community.
The new Hubb allows their customers to access the customer support team and help overcome issues with their communities.
After extensive consulting with various business units within the organisation, we were able to select a great open source product that served as a great starting point, as it is customisable to the client's needs. We set up a new system with reliable hosting, backups and security patching which we now maintain going forward. We helped them to organise and get the community up and running, making this a successful project. We trained the client’s community managers to manage and develop this resource. They are now able to modify the structure and layout and work effectively with these powerful tools. This will set a strong safety framework which is based on graduated trust levels of permissions.
Alongside the original project to build a new website for the newly merged 3 housing associations we were also tasked with providing a space for tenants to be able to interact with each other and the community engagement staff from the organisation.
We would like to bring more connectedness between the main website and the forum (there are excellent tools to allow embedding of community areas into other sites – which adds value to the main site and helps develop the community further.)
Rather than just a static forum we choose a great open source product called Discourse. This is a fully featured forum but also allows real time conversation in a more chat based format to ensure that help can be provided by the community.