Social value is an intrinsic part of the social housing sector’s DNA.
It is central to the collective social purpose.
The challenge faced is to ensure that how the sector understand and measure social value is fit for the business of social housing now and in the future.
HACT’s roadmap will enable the social housing sector to use social value information to improve services, enhance decision-making and increase the impact they make.
HACT and social value
HACT has been pioneering social value in social housing since 2012.
In 2014, HACT and Simetrica-Jacobs together with over 50 social housing organisations developed and launched the UK Social Value Bank.
Since its launch, the UK Social Value Bank and the value calculator has been downloaded over 18,000 times. They have also developed three further social value calculators to help organisations measure their impact around mental health, community-led housing and community asset transfers.
HACT also provides a range of other tools and services to enable social housing organisations to embrace social value and its application to the business of social housing.
The UK Social Value in Housing Taskforce
So much has changed since the taskforce first came together as a sector to find a better way to measure social value. Now, across the sector, social housing organisations are using social value information in a way that they have never done before. It has moved beyond retrospective reporting and into business decision-making.
In January 2020, HACT and Simetrica-Jacobs convened the UK Social Value in Housing Taskforce, consisting of representatives from 22 organisations, including social housing organisations, national membership bodies, developers and contractors, and the Regulator of Social Housing.
The Taskforce agreed that the sector needs to work collaboratively to standardise their approaches so that social value information is better understood and respected, is available to measure performance, and can be used to support and enhance our regulatory returns.
The Taskforce asked HACT to develop a roadmap that included an expanded UK Social Value Bank, along with resources and tools that could be used by any project in any social housing organisation looking to improve, demonstrate and maximise its social, economic and environmental outcomes.
The roadmap for the future of social value in social housing
Working with Simetrica-Jacobs and partners from the social housing sector, HACT have developed a roadmap for the future of social value in social housing.
The roadmap consists of three stages:
- Stage 1: expanding the UK Social Value Bank with a broader set of wellbeing values, a new set of economic values and a new set of environmental values. In bringing together these different methodologies, they will ensure they are coherent, robust and avoid double counting, so that social housing organisations can apply social value metrics across their business with confidence.
- Stage 2: developing tools to use the UK Social Value Bank. These will enable social housing organisations to apply social value metrics across their business, whether in asset management and investment, ESG reporting, or regulation and value for money.
- Stage 3: applying the UK Social Value Bank to the business of social housing. In evolving their approach to social value, HACT will develop a range of services for social housing organisations, including social value assurance, social value audit and certification, social value benchmarking and social value innovation.