Placing customers at the heart of our business with a compelling brand
"From the moment a customer starts their research into buying a home, through the sales journey and then post legal completion, our goal is to be a trusted partner who reliably delivers outstanding quality and service.”
Sonia Da Costa
Chief Customer Experience Officer
Customer satisfaction score1
NHBC RI score improvement2
Our vision is to build homes with quality our customers can rely on at a price they can afford.
To deliver on this vision we have placed our customers at the heart of our business. Being customer focused is one of our values – our customers are our priority and we aim to build consistently high quality homes in communities people love to live. We will earn customers’ trust by treating them fairly and with integrity.
We recognise the significant financial and emotional investment they make when buying their home with us. We strive to deliver high quality homes to all of our customers and to provide them with excellent service from the point they choose their new home to their moving in day and beyond.
Build right, first time, every time
One of the Group’s five key priorities is build quality: our ambition is to build right, first time, every time, driving improvements in consistently building high quality homes and in on-site efficiencies. The Group continued to make improvements to build quality and customer service throughout 2021 through the Persimmon Way, our consolidated approach to new home construction. The Persimmon Way provides a stable, consistent operational framework that is scalable – it enhances the Group’s capabilities in delivering high levels of build quality across growing legal completion volumes. This has already been demonstrated in our 2021 results, where we delivered c.1,000 more new homes to our customers than in the prior year whilst providing five-star levels of customer satisfaction.
The Persimmon Way is a comprehensive programme covering all aspects of our build process. Since its initial roll out during 2020, the business sought to go further and faster in implementing the programme, having seen the on-site and customer service improvements that were being made. The Persimmon Way became fully operational across the business in summer 2021.
The training programmes for on-site teams were enhanced with the Group seeking accreditations where relevant. We have also continued to invest in technology to track and record quality checks through the build process.
- We have standardised new home design and construction detail across the business to support the drive for improved consistency and efficiency of high quality build right first time, every time delivery.
- We are introducing more exacting building tolerances than current industry standards driving improved quality and efficiency across the Group.
- We are developing a ‘Good Practice Guide’, which will be rolled out in 2022 to share areas of best practice and assist in the further development of the Group’s construction disciplines.
- In 2021, we launched the Group’s first internal ‘Construction Excellence Awards’ to recognise and reward site teams that demonstrate innovations and outstanding management skill to achieve excellence on their development.
- Management incentive programmes have been revised so that successful achievement of improvement in build quality and customer care standards are appropriately rewarded.
- In 2022, a proportion of all colleagues’ bonus schemes will be dependent upon achieving high standards of build quality across the Group, aligning all employees with this key priority for the business.
- A complementary training programme is crucial to the successful application and delivery of the Persimmon Way, consistently across the business.
- A three day ‘Site Managers Essentials’ programme, mandatory online modules and on-site Toolbox Talks targeting build quality support the implementation of the Persimmon Way.
- The ‘Persimmon Pathway’ provides a comprehensive internal training programme for our Site and Assistant Site Managers driving up build quality and increasing on-site efficiency.
- Persimmon is an accredited National Vocational Qualification assessment centre, a first for a UK housebuilder. As at 31 December 2021 c.90% of our site management team held a relevant NVQ, an increase from 21% at the start of the year.
- Our expanding team of Independent Quality Controllers (IQCs) report directly to the Group Construction Director. The team, which has more than doubled since the start of 2021, undertake quality assurance inspections on each of our developments, monitoring construction build quality across 21 key stages of new home construction. Expanding our resource enables the Inspectors to perform on-site coaching where needed. This enhanced assurance process is improving build efficiencies on our sites and customer satisfaction as we ‘get it right first time’.
- The Group has invested significantly in its digital systems which provide support with regard to our inspection and training processes. We are increasing on-site digitisation, including through the Site Manager Application, currently being trialled across our Southern region, which tracks and records pre-completion assurance processes.
Third Party Audit
- External audits of our processes have commenced with the aim of covering all operating companies by summer 2022. These processes provide additional assurance over the Group’s build quality as well as identify areas of best practice and assist in the further development of the Group’s construction processes.
The Group’s Independent Quality Controllers (IQCs) monitor build quality across 21 key stage processes. The expansion of the team during 2021 has provided further opportunity for on-site coaching of our site teams.
The Group’s training programme, delivered through the ‘Persimmon Pathway’ complements Persimmon’s ambition of building right, first time, every time.
We perform a seven-stage pre-completion inspection process on each of our homes before we hand them over to our customers. During this quality assurance process each of our homes are inspected by senior employees from the relevant regional company.
Each customer receives a ‘New Home Demonstration’, performed by the site manager and sales adviser before they move into their home. To allow these processes to occur effectively and demonstrate our commitment to put “customers before volume”, the construction of all of our homes must be build complete 21 days prior to handing over the finished home to our customers.
All of our homes are sold with a 10-year warranty backed by either the National House Building Council (NHBC) or Premier Guarantee. Each warranty provider conducts their own independent checks at key build stages.
Alongside the continued development of the Persimmon Way, we are also working across the industry to help drive up standards in important areas. We have, for example, signed the ‘Building a Safer Future Charter’ as an inaugural member, demonstrating our determination to drive safety improvements within our company and across the industry.
Our customer service
We have an established comprehensive approach to customer service including focused and clear communication supporting each customer throughout their home-buying journey from the date of reservation of their new home to the bi-annual anniversary of moving-in day.
Through the ‘Persimmon Pathway’ the Group has developed structured professional qualification pathways for its sales teams in partnership with the Institute of Sales Professionals (ISP). This is an industry first partnership that has resulted in over 60 of our Sales Advisors being accredited by the Association with a further 100 on the programme. Through the Sales Pathway, Sales Advisors undertake a structured curriculum that integrates Persimmon’s Sales Excellence programme with the ISP’s Continued Professional Development, culminating in an ethics examination prior to accreditation. In addition, the Group has registered with the Institute of Customer Service, which will provide an accredited route to training of our customer service teams.
New Homes Quality Code
Persimmon has completed the New Homes Quality Board’s initial developer registration process and we are working through the steps required in order to activate our membership to this body in the second half of 2022. We welcome the introduction of the New Homes Quality Code, which aims to drive up quality and customer service standards across the industry together with the appointment of a New Homes Ombudsman Service. Persimmon complies with the Consumer Code.
Our customer care
One of our five key priorities is to build right, first time, every time improving customer satisfaction and mitigating the need for customer care visits and appointments. However, if problems do occur, we want to rectify them as quickly and efficiently as possible.
We have continued to invest in our customer care resource, in digital technology and in training. The Group Training Department has developed structured training modules for our customer care teams driving improvements in the service we provide and enhancing customer satisfaction.
FibreNest provides ultrafast, full fibre to the home broadband from moving-in day. It was developed in response to feedback from customers and aligns with current government strategy to deliver modern technology to new homes. Our aim is to ensure that FibreNest provides ultrafast speeds coupled with excellent levels of service. FibreNest currently serves c.21,000 customers across over 270 sites with further rollouts continuing. The service is highly ranked compared to other internet service providers in the UK.
During the year, FibreNest set up a wholesale offering, enabling other network providers access to the service should they choose, in order to provide choice for our customers. We look forward to providing this service and delivering choice for our customers.
Delivering homes with quality our customers can rely on at a price they can afford.
Our vision is to build homes with quality our customers can rely on at a price they can afford. We aim to deliver housing that meets each of our customers’ needs by providing a range of house types in areas where they wish to live and work.
The Group has a UK-wide network of active sites served by its 31 operating businesses delivering homes to communities with the most housing need. Our wide range of house types, together with the Group’s three distinctive house building brands; Persimmon, Charles Church and Westbury Partnerships, enable us to provide desirable homes at a range of price points for our customers.
We are proud to deliver a range of house types which make owning a home accessible for all. Our private average selling price of £259,231 for the year to 31 December 2021 (2020: £250,897) is over 20%3 below the UK national average and approximately c.50% of our private home completions for the year have been to first time buyers.
1. The Group participates in a National New Homes Survey, run by the HBF. The Survey year covers the period from 1 October to 30 September. The rating system is based on the number of customers who would recommend their builder to a friend.
2. Our % improvement in the number of Reportable Incidents on the NHBC’s inspection of our homes.
3. National average selling price for newly built homes sourced from the UK House Price Index as calculated by the Office for National Statistics from data provided by HM Land Registry.
We recognise the importance of maintaining an effective and engaged supply chain in delivering our core focus areas.Our Suppliers
Our Charitable Foundation
The Persimmon Charitable Foundation helps to support our communities by making donations to local charities and community groups in the areas where we operate.Our Charitable Foundation