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Abbeyfield Scotland launches new home management system

During the last few months, organisations across the housing sector have been relying on technology in a way that no one could ever envisage.  More crucially, it has made everyone realise how dependant we are on efficient access to information.

Abbeyfield Scotland quickly realised the pitfalls of relying on paper copies, filing cabinets, and trying to source information hidden in their shared drives. At the same time, staff members had to move swiftly to home working at the beginning of the lockdown in March.

Before anyone had heard the terms COVID- 19, lockdown, or social distancing, we had already embarked on a journey to replace our outdated home management system. We appointed a company Designer Software to provide an alternative called HomeMaster. This new system would allow us to store our data securely and efficiently, enable us to access it from wherever we are working, and improve our knowledge of our customer needs.

Nicola Thom, commissioned by Abbeyfield Scotland to implement the new system, said: “It was a daunting challenge to take on a project like this during lockdown when I had only recently started working with the organisation.  However, the collective input, knowledge, and professionalism from the team at Abbeyfield Scotland, coupled with the guidance and support from Designer Software, made the whole experience hugely rewarding. It’s great to see that Abbeyfield Scotland now has an integrated management tool that will serve to drive business improvements and operational efficiency as it becomes more embedded within the organisation.”

Nicola Thom Profile Pic
Nicola Thom Consultant (temporary) 

As well as the usual challenges organisations face when making significant system changes, we had the extra pressure of doing so during a lockdown with office staff working remotely from home.

As a result, face to face meetings with Designer Software when configuring or switching over to the new system were not allowed.  Instead, workshops and training sessions were all conducted via Microsoft Teams, which allowed them to explore the new system online under the detailed guidance of their Project Manager. The organisation started to successfully use HomeMaster at the beginning of August 2020 and now aim to complete a second phase by early October.

Chris Prime, Project Manager at HomeMaster, said: “Working with Abbeyfield Scotland during the lockdown in implementing HomeMaster to drive the benefits afforded by our Web-Based hosted solution has been a highly rewarding experience. As an organisation, due to the pandemic, we have now implemented several HomeMaster solutions remotely. There is no doubt this new way of working delivers significant benefits and costs savings to our customers”.

In phase two of their implementation, Abbeyfield Scotland aims to go beyond using just the essential home management functions and hopes to fully utilise the management tools and efficiency that that such a system can provide an organisation.