“The first round of EDP revealed that organisations in the homelessness sector have a far wider range of enterprise options and assets than many trustees and frontline staff expected,” says Kevin Davey, a senior consultant at Eastside Primetimers. “During 2019 a significant number of ideas have been transformed from vague concepts or ambitions that were going nowhere to deliverable businesses which will generate new income and raise the social impact of providers.”
“I’ve led and assisted options appraisals and business plans which have identified very strong opportunities. These include new user-led enterprises providing cleaning, maintenance and construction services, the creation of a therapeutic land-based community, more effective ways of using property assets with greater impact and financial return, and the creation of innovative insight and training services. Some of these now have business plans, resources and customers waiting and will go live early in 2020. Others will require careful development through the year with partners and specialists. Enterprise isn’t a quick fix for financial shortfalls or pressing cashflow problems. Rushed, it will probably add to them. Neither is it a case of seeing what others do and copying them. The precise drivers of success in one organisation and setting are often overlooked and difficult to reproduce elsewhere. Start up is a learning process that takes time and stamina. However the first year of EDP has shown that approached properly - with market research, informed financial modelling and stress testing, experienced insight, customer development and capacity building – new forms of enterprise can be established which will generate resources for the sector."