Interview with Jessica Robinson, neighbourhood manager

Like all of Peabody’s neighbourhood managers, Jessica Robinson’s workload is varied, sometimes challenging – but always rewarding.

Her patch covers a wide area of north-east London, which means that she sometimes finds herself driving 20 miles a day.

Jessica is fully involved in all aspects of housing. She is always accessible and holds regular walkabouts on her estates and a surgery every Friday.

Her background in sheltered housing means she is especially sensitive to vulnerable or older residents. "If I haven’t seen someone for a while, I’ll go and check on them or ask around," she says. This approach works. She and her team have already been instrumental in obtaining additional care for a resident in need of help on at least one occasion.

'Residents are the priority'

Whenever possible, Jessica tries to resolve issues directly with the people concerned.

"I believe in sorting things out at source,” she says, "That way, things don’t escalate."

She adds: "I want to hear about issues as they crop up, and will do all I can to help."

As a neighbourhood manager, Jessica is a point of contact and support for local groups, including tenants’ and residents’ associations, MPs and other agencies as well as other employees in Peabody. She also needs to keep on top of whatever is happening locally, including antisocial behaviour.

Throughout, her residents come first. "I’m only happy when the resident is happy,” she says. “I always put their satisfaction first and always listen to them – whether it’s an issue with repairs or anything else – the residents are the priority."