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One Housing helps employees find their mojo

One Housing helps employees find their mojo

Rolling out mojo saw rises in motivation, workplace enjoyment, and feelings of connection; and reductions in errors and turnover

About One Housing

One Housing’s vision is: We provide places for people to call home and support them to live well. They do this through providing high quality homes and providing care. They manage around 16,000 homes across London and surrounding counties and care for over 11,500 people, helping them live independently.

One Housing is a not-for-profit organisation. But because they’re committed to doing everything they can to tackle the housing shortage, they run a wide range of commercial, profit-making projects and schemes to pay for new affordable homes and services for the people they house and care for. Since 2011 they have delivered more than 1,500 new affordable homes.

They’re London’s largest provider of care, support, housing and services to people with complex needs. Over the last sixty years they have worked hard to make a positive difference to their residents’ lives by promoting aspiration, independence and wellbeing through a range of training and support services.

They have one of the broadest scopes of any housing association; including private and affordable residential care for the elderly, domiciliary care, complex mental health schemes, homeless hostels, property development and property management.

One Housing has around 1,700 employees.

Embracing the Employee Experience Opportunity

One Housing’s overall Employee Net Promotor Score (ENPS) from Pulse Surveys ran three times a year was consistently falling from a high in the summer of 2019 of 72% to 62% in the autumn of 2020. Factors for the drop in engagement included tough financial pressures on One Housing due to a £265M bill for building safety (post Grenfell disaster), ensuing restructures in several departments, and, of course, the pandemic. Also, customer satisfaction scores were dipping too, so there  was a clear business impact.

The Pulse Survey results and discussions with employees (either on a personal level or via the ‘One Voice’ employee voice forum) informed the main areas for improvement:

  • Development opportunities were lacking; with little funding available, and most opportunities were training courses ran at fixed times, on a ‘one-to-many’ basis
  • Line management capabilities were ‘patchy’, with the added complexity of employees being ‘harder to reach’ when working from home due to the pandemic
  • An overwhelming focus on ‘task management’

The Internal Communications & Employee Engagement team (IC&EE) were doing their best to boost engagement through traditional methods by delivering the strategic narrative; delivering events aimed to boost morale, knowledge and wellbeing; and introducing more employee voice channels. However, the team felt that a new approach was needed to ‘shift the dial’ on how employees felt about working at One Housing. There was no brief as such, just a desire to fulfil one of the One Housing values: We look for ways to improve.

An added complexity was a lack of funding available, so any solution would need to be rather economical! The plan was to try to find a tool which could be piloted on a small group first, to minimalise the financial risk. If successful, it could then be rolled out further.

Helping colleagues to get their mojo back

The IC&EE team liked and understood Brand Experiences The 3 Es of Productivity and approached us. We suggested that it would be a great idea to start with Energy, as this can deliver the quickest payback. This made sense as, after all, customer service was beginning to be impacted, so time was of the essence!

One of the oft-quoted things during the pandemic has been Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, as many people had been forced to revert to focussing on the basics. So, we recommended mojo.

Specifically for One Housing, it was felt that mojo would:

  • Create a more personalised Employee Experience for employees, as the tool is focussed on an individual and isn’t ‘broad brush’ L&D
  • Enable line managers to understand their employees better and to then work with them to create action plans to boost their motivation and productivity
  • Be a device which encourages both the manager and employee to take time away from regular tasks to reflect, and think bigger picture

Mojo—easy to use, easy to gain traction

One of the beauties of mojo is that it’s simple to use and can be delivered with very little (or no) training. So, there was little need for an extensive comms campaign. It was more about influencing, getting people on-board and explaining the why.

Like any other employee, those in HR would benefit from having the three themes improved within their Employee Experience. It wasn’t a difficult ‘sell’ to say that we were going to invest time and effort into focussing on improving their experience at work.

The delivery roadmap was:

  1. To obtain the senior leadership buy-in, the HR leadership team were given a demo of mojo so they could assess if they thought the tool would be useful—they all did
  2. The IC&EE team set up a Motivational Power Hour with Brand Experiences, where all HR employees were present. The presentation outlined the importance of motivation and then there was a demo of mojo, where employees could ask questions
  3. Supporting information—a video explaining how to use mojo and some background information—was uploaded to the HR Workplace page

4.An email was sent with each employee’s login details and how to access the site

5.Employees took their online map, and they received their results instantly

6.Line Managers are encouraged to discuss the results of their direct reports in 1:1 meetings, and then to create action plans to improve motivation, which can be recorded in mojo

  1. At the next available departmental meeting, team results were discussed
  2. New maps are taken quarterly so steps 5-7 are repeated four times a year.

Proving the ROI for investment in EX

The introduction of mojo met One Housing’s needs by:

  • Enabling effective conversations between managers and direct reports on what motivates them, their motivation levels, and co-creating action plans to improve life at work. Off the back of these action plans has come learning pathways, suggestions for webinars/events/courses to attend, a broadening of individual roles.
  • Adding an extra purpose/driver for managers to be prompted to have more regular performance conversations. Employees are empowered to request conversations about their results and this has meant more performance conversations and opportunities to give that all-important feedback.
  • Allowing managers to understand their direct reports better. Not only do they now know what motivates them, they can also dig deeper into their current wellbeing by understanding satisfaction levels. The evidence makes it easier to probe: Are you okay?
  • Giving sight of motivations across the team so that project teams could be created based on people’s preferences. This has resulted in engaged project team members who are excited by the project, and can have time away from regular duties.
  • Creating dialogue between all HR employees. Each month, the department splits into four teams to discuss a motivator and then each group feeds back in the monthly departmental meeting. This means everyone is active in this set piece meeting, and encourages co-operative working. It also allows team members to understand and appreciate each other’s motivations.

In short, at a time when many were feeling isolated, mojo brought people together and enabled HR employees to have more of a personalised Employee Experience.


Mojo has positively impacted the HR department:

  • There has been a 4% rise in motivation levels across the department. This is despite the pandemic, a low annual pay rise, and a series of restructures across the organisation putting a lot of pressure onto the HR team.
  • A 9% rise in the team saying they ‘enjoy working at One Housing’, from 61% to 70%.
  • 100% answering that they felt encouraged to use digital collaboration tools, up by 27%
  • The team has also seen a 24% rise in people feeling connected with their colleagues, a 10% rise in people saying their manager helps them to improve their performance, and a 5% rise in leadership trust.
  • The HR team also saw turnover reduce from 23% to 14% and payroll errors reduce by 3.3%. These both have a direct financial impact on the bottom line.
  • The success of mojo in HR has led to other departments requesting the tool. It’s now being rolled out across Care & Support, IT, Finance and Governance & Compliance.
  • By focussing on personalising the Employee Experience, mojo helps leaders and managers to display that everyone does matter at work, and the tool is certainly proving to be a success at One Housing.