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Skill Sets & Competencies to Facilitate Business Transformation in the Community Housing Sector | SHARE


Skill Sets & Competencies to Facilitate Business Transformation in the Community Housing Sector

Date: May 30, 2018

Time: 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. EST

Speakers: Karen Hemmingson, Chief Research Officer, BC Housing, British Columbia & Rick Farrell, General Manager, Housing, Community and Health Services, The Regional Municipality of York, Ontario

Karen and Rick

The housing sector is changing: are you? With the changing regulatory and operating environment, portfolios of non-profit housing are evolving and, with this, housing organizations are adjusting their management and business approaches.

This webinar shared the study findings from Housing Partnership Canada’s second business transformation project. Based on 213 survey responses and 21 interviews with housing organizations across Canada, the study examined skill sets and core competencies, governance and internal capacities, and organization resilience and appetite for risks.

Speakers discussed how housing organizations are transforming the ways in which they do business, manage talent, adjust business practices and invest in organizational development; to future proof their businesses. The webinar covered:

  • Types of changes in organizations- renewing, diversifying and refocusing
  • Strategic actions (human resources, information technology, governance and boards, revenue generation and financing)
  • Business activities- modifications and diversification
  • Organizational development practices
  • Challenges and risks for business transformation

HPC gratefully acknowledges the support received from sector organizations, non-profit providers and their staff representatives, the key informants, and survey participants who contributed to and supported this important study.




Speaker bio:

Rick Farrell
Rick is the General Manager of Housing Services and the General Manager of Housing York Inc. As General Manager of Housing York Inc., York Region’s housing company, he oversees the operation of 2,400 units of social housing and provides leadership and support for the development of new housing developments. He has over 35 years of experience in the social and affordable house industry. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Carleton University and a Masters Certificate in Municipal Administration from York University. He has served on many industry related boards and committees including Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association, Ontario Municipal Social Services Association, Alberta’s Interagency Council on Homelessness and the Brenda Strafford Society for the prevention of domestic violence. He is currently the Vice Chair of Housing Partnership Canada.

Karen Hemmingson
Karen has been involved in Housing Policy and Planning work since 1989. An Urban Planner by training, Karen started her planning career developing social housing projects with non-profit societies. Karen`s planning career includes policy and development work on the City of Vancouver`s waterfront redevelopment sites of False Creek and Coal Harbour, and manager of the City’s Heritage Building Rehabilitation Program for Gastown, Chinatown and Victory Square. In addition to land use policy and development work, she was the Director of the Vancouver Agreement Unit for the provincial government, responsible for implementing both policies and a variety of housing and community development initiatives in the Downtown Eastside.

Karen is currently Chief Research Officer at BC Housing, and is responsible for managing research, policy and performance planning activities that support change in the housing sector. She is an active volunteer, currently sitting on two international committees addressing implementation of the New Urban Agenda, and continues to support social housing NGO’s in South Africa through Rooftops Canada.