One year of looking after our green spaces within our community
Ben Moss is part of our Grounds Maintenance team. One year on from the service being taken in-house, he reflects on what’s changed.
As a local lad, I’ve been working in south east London for years, including for the company that Phoenix contracted to cut the grass, trim the hedges, and plant flower beds, among other things.
I spent some of my time working in Phoenix neighbourhoods, but we also worked for other organisations in other areas. It meant we had less time to spend focusing on each area.
One year on from the Grounds Maintenance service being taken in-house and the team being employed directly by Phoenix, it’s been incredible to see the difference it’s made.
With the team giving 100% attention to our neighbourhoods, things are a lot cleaner.
And it’s not just that: while we maintain, we now also improve. We can do a bit more to every job.
We’re planting flowers, heather bushes and trees across some of our estates. We get to know residents, what they want and work with them to achieve it: some asked us for hanging baskets in parts of the community, and we’ve been able to deliver this. And we're constantly listening so that we can continue to work with residents.
The benefits haven’t just been for the people that live in Phoenix homes – when I joined the organisation, I’d never joined a company so welcoming.
Phoenix listens. When we say we need different equipment to do our jobs to the best standard, then we’re supported.
The team has had opportunities for professional development, too. I attended the Phoenix Academy, learning more about social housing, and plan to take up a horticultural course to better understand the greenery in the community and how to look after it.
Taking Grounds Maintenance in-house has been good for residents, the team, and Phoenix.
We’re trusted to do our jobs. It’s been amazing to see how enthusiastic and proud the team has been to look after our community in just one year. Everyone enjoys working with our residents, who have been brilliant throughout, showing patience as we established our routine and being generous with regular compliments.
It doesn’t feel like a job any more: I feel like everyone in the team has a future, in Phoenix and in our careers.
Phoenix took the Grounds Maintenance service in-house on 1 December 2017. Find out more about what the team has achieved.