Case study: HQN

Housing Quality Network (HQN) needed an accessible and user-friendly system to automate their workflows and organise their customer data.

Read on to learn how KulaHub helped HQN streamline their customer data and improve their email marketing to fine-tune their sales operations.


Housing solutions

HQN was launched in 1997 to support housing associations with tendering contracts to local authorities.

Since then, HQN has grown into a membership organisation that provides high-quality advice, tailored support and training to housing associations, councils, arms-length management organisations (ALMOs) and other housing providers.

HQN provides a range of services—from consultancy support and accreditation to training, events and workshops—to the UK and Australia’s social housing sector.


HQN’s Marketing and Data Challenge


HQN relies heavily on email marketing to reach its members and potential customers in the housing sector.

Their sales team sends around 25 to 30 email campaigns a week to market their services. Each campaign is targeted at a different customer profile and managing so many campaigns was time-consuming and labour intensive.

Following the COVID-19 pandemic and their existing CRM malfunctioning, the company decided that the system they had been relying on was expensive, slow and outdated. They needed a new solution.


HQN faced several challenges, including:


Difficulties Managing Email Marketing

Email marketing is the primary way HQN communicates with its customers and new prospects, with their sales team targeting around 100,000 individual contacts each week.

Email is also the main way that customers engage with the company’s many services. This means it needed a system that could manage a number of different workstreams and processes all at once. Automation and personalisation of email campaigns is key to this.

HQN also wanted a system that could segment its members and prospects and allow them to take a more strategic approach to their marketing.


Inefficient Data Management

HQN has over 20 years of data and thousands of records, but they were not stored in a single database on the existing CRM.

This made the process of compiling reports time-consuming and frustrating.

HQN adds hundreds of new contacts to their CRM each month. However, their old system would duplicate records which made managing customer data a headache.


An Outdated System

HQN had been using the same CRM for 15 years.

Their existing CRM had been suitable for their needs up until now. But it was out of date and required HQN to pay a regular license fee, which had become expensive.

HQN is now in a period of rapid growth because of its successful handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This meant that it needed a CRM system that could scale up in line with this growth.


A Blast from the Past

Before the pandemic hit, HQN had begun looking for a new CRM.

A system malfunction with their previous CRM caused the company email system to fail.

Luckily HQN’s training manager, Richard Hawley, had used KulaHub before and knew we would be a great fit for their business.


Let’s take a closer look at how KulaHub has helped HQN so far.


Data Organisation

Since August last year, KulaHub has been helping HQN clean and transfer its historical data from the old system.

Since switching to KulaHub, HQN’s data is now collected from all of its business and sales channels and stored in a single place—meaning no more duplication and human error.

By having access to accurate real-time data, HQN will soon be able to produce detailed reports on the success of their marketing activities.


Targeted Email Marketing

KulaHub has automated HQN’s workflows and improved its sales and marketing processes.

By streamlining its customer data, the company is now able to segment its members and prospects by factors such as purchasing habits or region.

This has enabled HQN to create highly targeted email marketing campaigns and improve their sales.

Moreover, by automating HQN’s workflows staff are able to focus more on customer service and improving their training and events.


Support and Friendly Service

Switching to a new CRM can be a daunting experience for most businesses.

However, KulaHub understood that HQN needed to rapidly boost its email marketing and use of data while maintaining high quality standards.

KulaHub has been on hand throughout the CRM transition, helping HQN transfer and organise their data and get up to speed with their new system.

KulaHub is designed to be user friendly and simple to use for small to medium-sized enterprises, and HQN staff have been surprised at how quickly they have got to grips with it.


Onwards and Upwards

KulaHub has streamlined HQN’s data, giving them access to accurate real-time information in one convenient location.

The new automated workflows have improved their efficiency and allowed them to curate personalised emails for their members and potential customers.

Going forward, HQN will automate more business processes and connect their website and e-commerce capabilities with KulaHub for an improved customer experience.


“I cannot sing KulaHub’s praises highly enough. Hazel has been working with us every step of the way to help us understand the system better and build our system around what we need.

“When our previous system had a malfunction, Hazel was able to sort out our KulaHub system by the close of business that day.

“With KulaHub, I have no concerns about rolling the system out to the whole organisation. It’s incredibly user friendly and designed with simple terminology for small businesses without huge IT departments.”

Richard Hawley, Training Manager, HQN.

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