HOBANZ

Status: (Past), Established 2011

Need

New Zealand has over 140, 0000 homeowners and buyers. The current housing industry is of a poor standard with leaky, rotting homes plaguing our Nation. As well as unqualified builders and inspectors taking advantage of the lack of regulation in the New Zealand industry, continuing the spread of this substandard quality.

The imminent need for an organisation to become the voice of New Zealand home and owners and buyers came with the earthquakes in Christchurch. The massive rebuild required meant HOBANZ needed to be active now to ensure this rebuild is of a higher quality.

Objective

Our first project with HOBANZ in Semester 1 2011 helped design their membership structure and an efficient method to manage it. This is one of the key steps the organisation needed to complete before their official launch to recruit members.

In Semester 2 2011 we helped HOBANZ need to understand how to use social media to target 20-35 year olds and what interests them in the various facets of home ownership. As well as help to define and drive what matters to the demographic in and about a home. HOBANZ would like to develop a better understanding of the needs of future homeowners in regards to housing and the community.

Background/Project Description

HOBANZ launched in 2007 as an incorporated society after the founders themselves were directly affected by owning a leaky home. The organisation always hoped to be able to become the voice of New Zealand home owners, similar to the AA (Automobile Associate) is for vehicle owners. Unfortunately the organisation is largely made of volunteers who do not have the time to spend doing the a lot of the research required to take the next steps forward for HOBANZ.

The SIFE AUT team identified the need to address the membership structure and how to measure it as the first steps required before launching this innovative social enterprise. Through a series of collaborative meetings with key representatives from HOBANZ created a membership structure entirely unique to HOBANZ and their specific needs. The model synthesises a range of sources including social enterprise theory and the new constellation of governance model. It addresses the major requirements of a social enterprise such as financial sustainability for charitable activities and how to prevent the people hijacking the organisation.

Partnered with the model, we presented customer relationship management (CRM) systems and an implementation strategy that included a breakdown of the steps required to launch the CRM system and a look to long-term growth opportunities. The report also included a wider range of recommendations SIFE AUT strongly urged HOBANZ to consider.

The objective of the SIFE AUT HOBANZ team in Semester 2 2011 was to construct a detailed report containing research into this demographic and recommendations for an effective and active engagement of 20-35 year olds. Sections of the report included primary data from focus groups, interviews with experts and secondary data from this demographic to clearly highlight their needs and desires in a home. This used the student analytical and market research skills to closely examine this market to help HOBANZ reach this important market.

Impact

The client stated in a written testimonial that they enjoyed working with SIFE AUT. They also stated that we gave them back their work/life balance as they can now return to activities, such as marathon running, which they sacrificed to help HOBANZ.

HOBANZ launched the first stage of their new website which incorporates a lot of SIFE AUT’s recommendations in early July 2011. Within 2 weeks of this launch, despite not holding a launch event, over 500 members have already signed up to be HOBANZ members.

Sustainability

HOBANZ has been empowered with a membership structure they helped to create, understand fully and allows for growth. As well as empowering the client to effectively manage their members also. SIFE AUT also provided valuable market insight in the 20 to 35 year old category to enable HOBANZ to effectively target future homeowners also. This will ensure the continued flow of members into the organisation.

It is exciting to see how this social enterprise will continue to grow in New Zealand. We are proud to have worked with this organisation into throughout 2011.

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