Quick facts
  • What we do:
    Housing, care and support to vulnerable adults
  • Year established:
  • Website:
  • Contact
    • Southdown Housing Association, 2 Bell Lane, Lewes, East Sussex, BN7 1JU

About Southdown Housing Association

What is it like to work for Southdown Housing Association

Southdown's Senior Team ensure the organisation is responsive to staff needs as well as clients’. They meet with all their direct reports’ individual staff once a year, regularly attend all the team monthly meetings within their remit, publish the minutes of their own senior meetings to staff and take their turn making tea/coffee! Southdown has been in the UK Top 10 of employers for working families for six years. The CEO and Deputy CEO meet each team during the year to discuss their experience and ideas. Senior Managers have everyday contact with staff and their daily timetables are available for all staff to see. Communication is always polite and respectful. They have a culture of transparency and share information openly with staff. Staff have training plans, regular supervision and performance appraisals to ensure they have the skills, resilience and attitude to work effectively. Indicators of individual divisional/department staff wellbeing and satisfaction, as well as performance, are monitored and shared openly. Senior staff discuss budgets with employees and report on the plans and activity to improve value for money so people can see for themselves what happens. Chief Executive Neil Blanchard role models the values of the organisations in his behaviour and clearly shows that he cares about the wellbeing of staff. His passion for and commitment to Southdown’s mission inspires and engages colleagues across the organisation. On a regular basis Neil visits staff teams across Sussex to meet as many colleagues as he can and to hear about any challenges and issues they may face in their roles. A poll of staff in 2016 shows strong appreciation of the contact.
My Manager
My Manager
All Managers receive monthly supervision from their Manager, as supervision is a critical tool in developing and supporting Managers. Managers attend regular Managers’ meetings, which have a learning/development feel as well as a business focus. Operational Managers also attend Managers’ Days between one and four times a year depending on the division. Managers may be given/take on additional responsibilities to further develop skills. Managers can attend external conferences and training to meet identified needs and internal training. Southdown Housing arrange external or internal mentoring/coaching for Managers with identified needs and also provide one-to-one support internally to help them develop skills or deal with particular challenges. Each year the organisation identify the current needs for specific groups of Managers and provide a programme of input to meet these. The input may be provided by external or internal trainers. In 2015-16 this included input on facilitating reflective practice, the impact of trauma and promoting diversity post-Brexit. Community Services Managers participate in reflective practice sessions for Managers. All managers have 10 and 20 week probationary appraisals and then an annual Performance Development Review. In some operational contracts, contract monitoring measures the performance of managers with senior managers having a dashboard with outcome measures for each team. A monthly ‘Balanced scorecard’ and other Quality and Performance monitoring processes/tools within Southdown track a variety of measures, which helps to identify issues for individual teams, their Managers and the Managers’ development needs. Finally all teams have their own annual action plans for the Manager to implement, which are updated each quarter to note progress and are reviewed by a more Senior Manager.
Giving Something Back
Giving Something Back
In addition to the support that Southdown provide to thousands of local vulnerable people, they also make additional and discretionary contributions. The organisation are accredited as a Disability Confident Employer and provide advice to other employers in promoting opportunities and providing support for employees who have a disability or other long-term health conditions. 21% of employees have a declared disability or a long-term health condition. Each year staff choose a charity to support together. In 2015 staff raised over £2,400 through a range of activities, including a live music event to support ‘Caring (therapeutic) Pets’. They have also been providing a food bank staff donation point for three years. For 2016 staff chose The Centrepoint Charity Relief Fund and have already donated over £1,000 from their fundraising. In East Sussex Southdown are providing free training to help local people who use mental health services and their carers so they can have their say and actively influence the services being provided. They are passionate about helping vulnerable people to overcome barriers that can prevent them from accessing work opportunities. As a specialist provider of supported employment and vocational advice they support over 1,200 people with mental health challenges each year to secure or retain paid work. Southdown are recognised as one of 14 ‘Centres of Excellence’ in the UK by the Centre for Mental Health for delivering Individual Placement and Support employment services. They also provide a dedicated vocational support service for carers. Called Ambitions, the service works with carers to support them to identify and pursue their vocational aspirations.

Learn more about the 8 factors of workplace engagement here


  • Women

    At least 40% of senior managers are women

  • Gym

    Companies offering either free gym/ sports facilities or offering subsidised gym membership for all employees

  • Health Insurance
    Health Insurance

    Companies offering private health insurance for all employees

  • Long Service
    Long Service

    50% of employees with more than 5 years' service

  • Family Friendly
    Family Friendly

    School hours contracts offered to staff

Company Statistics

  • Staff Turnover:


  • Earning £35,000+:


  • Male : Female:

    33% / 67%

  • Average Age:


  • UK sites:


  • Staff:



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