How low code is transforming the housing sector

Low code application development company, OutSystems, has today announced that the housing association, Midland Heart, will be using its platform as part of a 2 year IT transformation strategy. The housing firm hope that by using the low-code system they will be able to quickly and strategically develop ideas that will help them to revolutionise interactions with its 70,000 tenants.

Midland Heart, who maintain 33,000 homes, say they want to embrace digitisation and through teaming up with OutSystems, have already developed an app in just 12 weeks. They add that the application has already helped both staff and tenants.

“We have a vision to completely transform the tenant experience,” said Kathryn Downs, Director of Technology and Transformation at Midland Heart. “We want to create an easy, frictionless digital experience supporting everything from paying rent to reporting repairs. We knew we couldn’t achieve this vision with traditional ERP systems so we turned to low-code to give us the speed and agility we need.”

How low-code helps

The aim of the collaboration is to enable the home company to be available “instantly and on demand” when needed.

Downs explains, “The housing sector tends to operate in a traditional way, with customer communications happening by telephone or face to face. We saw an opportunity to provide a more fit-for-purpose service to customers who prefer to do their transactions online – ultimately empowering our customers and giving them more choice about how they engage with us.”

“A great example of this is that we used to receive a lot of calls from customers who wanted to find out how much rent they owed, and this took up a lot of our customer service team’s time. It was clear that providing an instant way for customers to check their balance would reduce calls to our customer hub and free up our operatives to spend time on more complex issues,” she continued.

Why OutSystems?

After specifying their requirements, Midland Heart trialed OutSystems for 6 months. In this time, the low-code company developed an app that enables field workers to easily report problems with properties. It also created a section of the app which lets tenant’s mange rent. A CRM platform has also been built which allows housing problems to be tracked and resolved effectively.

The businesses are continuously working together to develop a new app that will be out in September. It’s hoped this new application will allow customers to search for houses and book viewings online.