GIS is being used across all housing departments including Community Investment where GIS provides a new community insight into your data which you may never see from just a spreadsheet. Sourcing Open Data in GIS gains far more insights than just using inhouse data in isolation. There is more and more open data becoming available with local authorities and other public bodies now providing and maintaining all sorts of useful information. For example Indices of Multiple Deprivation can really support with Community Investment programmes. Other examples of where GIS can help with your Community Investments include:
View your survey results in a different way. Looking at this data geographically can provide further insights.
If you are looking to promote services to your tenants as well as the community in general then GIS can be used to understand the community by looking at demographic profiles etc.
Locating community projects and previous funding applications enables comparison with open data sets such as the IMD and enables identification of potential gaps in the service provision within the communities.
Being able to provide mapping and data to support community groups for them to complete grant paperwork so they can justify their requirements with maps and data.
Cottsway Housing Association use GIS to support their Community Insight programme and Sam Stronach who is Community Investment Officer spoke to Rick Thompson about how in the video below.
“Cottsway have been working with ODCGIS since we decided to update our GIS mapping to support our property, development and housing management services back in 2019. For us in the Communities team in particular, ODCGIS have given us the support to map indicators of deprivation such as fuel poverty, children living in absolute poverty and those receiving free school meals, adults with long-term illness or disability and young people not in education, employment or training (NEETs). This allows us to see where to target our own community activities and also where we can help with other initiatives that support local communities e.g. by supporting projects applying for grants through our community fund. We also use our GIS to help monitor our grounds maintenance and communal cleaning contracts and earlier this month ODCGIS mapped our customer satisfaction with these services to help highlight hotspots for our neighbourhood housing officers to target for improvement with our contractors. The turnaround for this was very quick (next day in fact) despite short notice and we are very happy with the helpful and approachable service that ODCGIS provide, Alan and Laura especially. Thank you and all your team, it is much appreciated!”
Alex Williams – Community Involvement Officer – Cottsway Housing Association