Castleton Maintain: A fully scalable solution, proven to support Novus’ rapid growth over the years.
Novus first purchased Castleton Maintain in 2007 to support their growing maintenance business. Over the last 10 years the software has supported their growth towards £150m revenue, through multiple contracts. The system is a significant part of Novus’s competitive advantage as they are able to meet the increasing demands of clients to deliver repairs on time, to budget and provide real time information to both staff and clients.

The need

Novus have evolved into an award-winning property maintenance company with a very clear mission: to deliver a safe workforce that provides quality service, commitment and sustainability to communities throughout the UK. To ensure Novus Solutions continued to deliver on planned and reactive maintenance and repairs, the need was to procure a scalable system – that precisely addressed the requirements of the social housing environment, with customer service at the heart.

The solution

As part of the process, Castleton participated in the traditional selection methodology of demonstration of solution, response to specification and site visits. Key personnel from Novus made two visits to another social housing contractor to see a fully implemented example. Areas included call taking, raising jobs, appointing, scheduling, mobile working, job costing, invoicing and other back office functions. Maintain proved successful, and a 4-month implementation plan followed. All training was undertaken at Novus premises, including early morning training for operatives before they commenced work at 8.00am.

The key areas of Maintain deployment at Novus were as follows:

  • Integration to Novus’ existing systems
  • Integration to client systems
  • Appointment booking
  • Job management
  • Scheduling
  • Job costing
  • Invoicing
  • Mobile working
  • Sub-contractor portal
  • Support and maintenance of the system as well as hosting provided through Castleton’s data centre.

Key benefits

  • Greater efficiencies via workforce scheduling
  • Integration to existing systems
  • Scalable solution
  • Real time information for both staff and client
  • Timely response and repairs
  • Training support

The results

Novus see Maintain as a great return on investment and it is used widely throughout their business for operational and commercial purposes. The initial contract for the solution was for 3 years, which has continuously been extended to meet the changing demands and expansion of the business.

10 years on and Novus and Castleton enjoy a very good working relationship, based upon a true partnership and not a typical supplier/customer one. At Castleton, we have assisted Novus numerous times in meetings with clients/prospective clients, reacted quickly to requested functionality and deployed new interfaces on short timescales for new contracts.

Systems Manager Lee Hollins comments on the successful implementation and ongoing use of the Maintain system;

Maintain is a comprehensive and robust system used for the management of repairs and maintenance across our business. The scheduling functionality allows us to gain efficiencies from our workforce and the sub-contractor portal is used extensively to manage our sub-contractors.

The system has been integrated with a number of systems including OpenHousing, Academy, Orchard and the Juce van tracking solution. Castleton’s input to the development of the interfaces has been invaluable, both with their support to us and our housing clients. They have extensive knowledge of the social housing sector and systems used within in it. Our experience of working with Castleton and the support they give to us has always been positive

Lee Hollins, Systems Manager for Novus.