Remote property inspections – a socially responsible way for councils to review properties

Our Local Authorities clients are increasingly asking us about technology solutions which help them protect staff by minimising or eliminating the requirement for them to be in the office. Our Aspire mobile property inspection solution is probably one of the best examples of this and we are seeing renewed interest in how this supports social distancing measures whilst still enabling Property Inspectors to get the job done.

Conducting remote property inspections
Aspire has been configured with all data held and processed centrally in one place and made available via tablets, iPads and laptops, so Property Inspectors can securely access it remotely from any device without the need to go into Councils offices.

The technology ensures Property Inspectors can schedule, plan, review and remotely manage all visits to new properties, S44A and empty properties and record the outcome of those visits electronically. Incorporating the ability to take photos and video footage and upload it into the case file during the site visit, there is no need for Inspectors to interact physically with any other staff members throughout the entire process.

Back office staff working from home
Back office and support staff can then login to the system from anywhere, including home offices to check the progress of inspections and manage progression of administrative duties such as issuing completion notices or updating exemption and relief details and occupancy information.

Aspire provides a structured workflow-based approach to property inspections with the ability to set up watch lists and automated tracking and flagging tools. This leads to a much more fluid process, giving Inspectors more time to focus on the inspection itself, rather than the administration around it. Ellie Hawkins, Revenues Team Leader at Surrey Heath Borough Council says “We effectively have a documented catalogue of events that supports what happened, which we have secure, instant access to, either from the office or out in the field.”

Multi-user remote access with real time updates
The technology enables multiple users to have remote access to specific property cases that are of relevance to them. Simon Rosser, Head of Revenues, Benefits & Fraud at Reigate & Banstead Borough Council notes “Since the roll out of the Aspire solution, back office staff have felt more connected and engaged in what Inspectors are doing. It is enabling individual staff to request their own property visits, if they have a situation they need verifying or qualifying and if someone is onsite conducting an inspection, they can review the data as it is being loaded in and ask Inspectors to drill down on a specific area if required.” All of this can happen without the need for face-to-face discussions, thanks to the central sharing of and access to real-time information.

Staff overheads and expenses can be significantly reduced with focused property visits in a concentrated area leading to less travel expenses, a reduced carbon footprint and Inspectors given more autonomy in planning their workload.

The use of remote property inspections technology like Aspire, facilitates home working and is a more efficient way to manage local properties, resources and information responsibly. If you want to find out more conducting remote property inspections contact or call 01772 842092 for more details.  

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