Scrutiny FAQs

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What is scrutiny?

Each year we ask groups of residents to take a close look at how certain areas of the organisation are being run, this process is called resident scrutiny. It’s a different group of residents for each new scrutiny, and they are supported by friendly and experienced Jigsaw staff.

Scrutinising something simply means looking at something in a lot of detail and that’s exactly what resident scrutiny is – your way to take a close look at what Jigsaw is doing and let us know if you think we could do it better!

There are three main ways that residents can contribute to the scrutiny process:

  • Take part in a survey at the start of the year to pick what parts of the business should been scrutinised that year, these surveys take place our Jigsaw Rewards website. For 2023, the scrutiny topics chosen are ‘damp and mould’ and ‘cost of living’
  • Volunteer to be part of a scrutiny panel – sign up via Jigsaw Rewards or by emailing us. This involves attending three online meetings to look at policies and procedures relating to the scrutiny topic and asking questions of Jigsaw staff members to investigate the topic further. The panel then makes recommendations that are shared with the most senior managers at Jigsaw. Scrutiny Panel members receive £50 in rent credits or a choice of vouchers
  • Answer a survey on Jigsaw Rewards about the scrutiny topic, the results of this survey are seen by the scrutiny panel and will help them make their recommendations.
What can I expect at a scrutiny meeting?

There will be around 8 to 12 resident volunteers who are the scrutiny panel itself, and around 3 or 4 staff members who are responsible for chairing the meeting, taking notes, sharing specialist information etc.

Before a meeting panel members will have been sent some documents to read. At the meeting they  will watch a presentation from a subject matter expert. Panel members get plenty of opportunities to ask questions such as:

  • Why is a service delivered in a particular way?
  • Why are particular timescales in place?
  • How much is this costing?
  • Can costs be reduced while still providing a good level of service?
  • Could we do this better or differently?

Some questions might involve staff going away and investigating something on behalf of the panel, or carrying out ‘spot checks’ and then updating the panel at the next meeting. For example, on a recent scrutiny about fire safety, the panel told staff to carry out spot checks at a number of blocks of flats to see if there were any problems with items in communal areas blocking exit routes.

At the final meeting, the panel members make recommendations based on all the information they have seen, these recommendations are passed on to the senior management team at Jigsaw and can lead to changes and improvements in the ways we do things.

Are scrutiny panel members paid?

Panel members are not paid, but they receive 500 Jigsaw Rewards points (worth £50) as a thank you for giving up their time. The points can be exchanged for rent credits or shopping voucher (Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Amazon or Love to Shop).

The points are for giving up the time and participating in meetings, as long as any feedback is given politely and respectfully it doesn’t matter if the feedback is positive or negative.

Do I have to speak in front of lots of people in the meetings?

You can either speak or type your comments and questions as a message that will pop up for everyone to read, whichever you prefer.

Do I need any special qualifications, training or experience to be part of a scrutiny panel?

Absolutely not. You already have the most important experience needed, which is being a tenant. Any other information you need we will provide.

Are meetings in person?

No. All scrutiny panel meetings take place online via a video call. We use Zoom for these calls, and the calls are free.

How long does a meeting last?

Up to 2 hours, there is a short break about halfway through.

How many meetings are in a scrutiny?

Three meetings, usually with around 6 weeks in between each meeting so further information can be gathered for the panel to look in into at the next meeting.

What time are the meetings?

Each scrutiny will have meeting at different times, it depends on the availability of the panel members and what suits the majority.

How do I sign up to be part of a panel?

Join Jigsaw Rewards and look out for any surveys asking for people to volunteers as scrutiny panel members (this happens twice a year).

You can also email and we will keep your name on our list and let you know when we are organising a new scrutiny panel.

What is Jigsaw Rewards?

Jigsaw Rewards is the best way to get involved in having a say in our services and to be part of the scrutiny process.

To find out more about Jigsaw Rewards and to register please visit:

Registration is simple and quick! Visit and enter your surname and 8 digit payment reference number. Follow a few short on screen instructions and you’ll be all set.

Is it a new group of people for every panel?

Yes, each scrutiny is a complete fresh group of people. It’s likely there will be a mixture of people who have volunteered on previous scrutiny panels and some new panel members too. It’s really important to have as many different people get involve in scrutiny as possible so the widest range of views are represented.

Do I need a computer and internet access to be part of a scrutiny panel?

Yes. Any device that connects to the internet such as a computer, laptop, tablet (e.g. iPad) or smartphone is fine. You need to somewhere relatively private for the call (so not a public place), although we understand occasional interruptions from children, pets etc. do happen.

If you have device that can connect to the internet, but don’t have broadband or enough data on your phone, get in touch and we will try to help.

What is Zoom?

It is an app and website we use for the scrutiny meeting video calls. It won’t cost you anything to use.

However, if you take part in a Zoom call on a smartphone that isn’t connected to Wi-Fi (broadband) it will use up some of your data allowance or credit on your mobile. If this would prevent you from being able to take part in a scrutiny panel, please contact us and we will see what we can do to help.

I want to get involved but I don’t know how to use Zoom, can you help?

We can help with this! When you volunteer to be part of scrutiny panel we will ask if you need any help using Zoom, if you say yes we will contact you directly to figure out how to best to help. In the past we have done practice calls with panel members and phoned people on their landline or mobile to talk them through getting connected to Zoom.

I’d like to get involved, but I have a disability or health issue that I think my prevent me form taking part, is there anything you can do?

Please contact us by emailing and speak to one of our friendly team members to explain your situation.

We will do our very best to work with you to find a solution. We’ve worked with several previous panel members to adapt things to make sure they felt comfortable and able to participate in the meetings.

If there are too many volunteers how do you pick who gets to take part?

When people volunteer to be part of the scrutiny panel we tell them what dates the meetings will be and ask them to tell us which times of the day they are free. The meeting will be held at the most popular time, if there are to many volunteers we will use a randomly select from the list who gets to be in the panel.

All other volunteers will be put on a reserve list and contacted if one of the selected panel members pulls out.

What topics have previous scrutiny panels looked at and what did they recommend?

In the last few years scrutiny panels have looked at these important issues and services:

  • Income loss (from empty homes)
  • Data protection and security
  • Anti-social behaviour
  • Fire risk assessments
  • Connect (our contact centre team who answer your calls)

You can read more about these here:

I want to ask something else, how do I contact you?

Please email our friendly team directly on or you can phone us on the usual number you’d use to contact Jigsaw (0300 111 1133 for Jigsaw Homes North or 0300 011 1144 for Jigsaw Tameside and Jigsaw Midlands) and ask to speak to ‘The Jigsaw Rewards and Scrutiny Team’.

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