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What are the benefits of signing up to the TEC in Housing Charter?

Blog by Geraldine Begg, Technology Enabled Care in Housing (TECH) Programme Co-ordinator.

Over the last two weeks, four more housing organisations have pledged their commitment to the TEC in Housing (TECH) Charter.

Cairn Housing Association is one of the organisations that has signed up.

John Davidson, Director of Customer Services at Cairn said: “Pro-actively checking in against all seven pledges will help inform our overall improvement work and ensure that TEC is considered fully.”

However, someone recently said to me: “I don’t think others realise the number of benefits to signing up .You really should let them know.”

This blog aims to put that right.

Paul Short, Service Manager at Fife Council believes that signing up to the TEC in Housing Charter will benefit the council’s customers.

He said: “The TEC in Housing Charter provides an excellent framework to ensure that our customers are at the heart of the technological services we provide.”

The charter covers seven main considerations that any housing organisations will need to build in when they are developing their housing association’s approach to TEC, no matter how large or small their plans may be. 

But we totally appreciate that although a framework is a useful tool, TEC is still fairly new territory to the majority of housing organisations and not many organisations would want to make the journey unsupported so we enable opportunities:

Meet up with other members to share ideas, challenges and successes

Dan Blake is Operations Director at Berwickshire Housing Association which is one of the charter signatory organisations.

He said: “BHA is embarking on a transformative journey that will improve the way we serve our customers across our rural communities. We aim to share, within the network, our own journey and explore the solutions and successes achieved by others.” 

Our next meeting is on 25 February, and it is open to all TECH Charter signatory organisations.

Access training

Some of our community have just enrolled in the Scottish Government, Office of the Chief Designer co-design training for free (usually £415).

Opportunities to ask experts questions

Many organisations providing care and support services know they must plan now to ensure that they will be able to continue to provide reliable and resilient services after the analogue switch off in 2025 – the roll-out of which is already underway. The Scottish Digital Office will be presenting at our April TECH community meeting to ensure housing organisations get reliable and independent information about options and implications.

Work closer with partners at a local level

Singing up to the TECH Charter enables stronger links between HSCPs and the housing sector.

Be inspired

The next meeting (25 February) will be held in the Blackwood Box House.

Link into a number of complimentary national programmes of work

We work with other programmes, including SFHA’s Innovation and Future Thinking programme, Digital Telecare, and SCVO digital.

Create and benefit from a shared online knowledge hub

We are currently collating TECH case studies.

Take part in testing products with tenants

Learn about TEC that can demonstrate a positive impact as well as being compliant with regulations, user friendly, and cost effective.

Access free/reduced price admission to conferences 

TECH Charter signatories can access free or reduced prices to relevant events and conferences.

Bield Housing and Care is the leading RSL in Scotland when it comes to developing the infrastructure required for a digital alarm receiving centre.

Dr Lynne Douglas, Bield Chief Executive Officer, said: “I look forward to working collaboratively. We recognise the importance of this area of work in achieving our vision: A Scotland where people of all ages are respected, can make their own choices and are able to live independent and fulfilling lives.”

I hope this blog has given you a bit more insight into the support available to housing organisations that sign up from the programme and from other social landlords.

To find out more about TEC in Housing, the charter and how to sign up go to https://techousing.co.uk  

For more information, please contact Geraldine Begg gbegg@sfha.co.uk or Graeme Hamilton graeme.hamilton1@ntlworld.com    

Pictured: John Davidson and Meg Deasley, Cairn Housing Association.

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