This year your Sabbatical Officer team have been working to address students concerns and complaints about Clever Student Lets (CSL).
In the summer, your Sabbatical Team and our Advice Centre received complaints and concerns from students about their experience with CSL. As a team, we were unhappy with our students' experiences, and we felt that we needed to take proactive action to improve things for them.
In August we raised students concerns with the SU's Leadership Team to understand why we were advertising CSL and learnt that back in 2018 the SU and CSL entered into a three-year advertising agreement which would last until July 2021. Due to the nature of the long-term contract, we decided it was within the students best interest to use our partnership to improve things for our students who are tenants of CSL.
Alongside the SU CEO and Director of Commercial Services, your VP Education met with Clever Student Lets to put forward your concerns and ask how CSL would improve their services, for our students. As a result of that meeting, the CEO of CSL set out a list of changes the company would make by the end of 2020 to improve the service students were receiving.
Since the previous Officer update, we have received feedback from students about their continued experience with CSL. During that time, there was also a change in CEOs at CSL.
In January, your VP Education, the SU CEO and our Director of Commercial Services met with the new CEO of CSL and raised your complaints. We discussed his plan to improve services for students and put processes in place to ensure students' concerns are dealt with promptly and effectively.
As a result of the meeting, the Students Union and Clever Student Lets have decided to mutually end the advertising agreement. However, we will continue to work with Clever Student Lets to ensure students are getting the service they deserve.
We are happy to say we are already seeing improvements in how CSL deals with students' requests and complaints, and we hope that students are seeing them.
If you have any concerns or queries about accommodation the best people to seek advice from is our independent Advice Centre.
If you have any feedback due to this most recent update, you can use our new student feedback tool 'Your Priorities' or get in touch with your VP Education.