TESTIMONIALS 

TESTIMONIALS 

Please see below a selection of testimonials from our Local Authority Clients, for our data solutions, GrantApproval, Pathway, Hive and AIM 

For more information on our data solutions, please click on the links below 
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Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
General 
Claire Woodcock, Service Assurance Operations Manager: Revenues and Benefits 
 
Working across Horsham, Milton Keynes and Northampton  
 
"I must admit when I was first handed test and trace I was concerned about the tight turnaround times the government had set for us to establish a process and a system to administer the scheme. 
 
Then I was introduced to Ascendant and the solution they offered. My worries lifted overnight. 
 
I found the team extremely helpful every step of the way. 
 
The portal does everything that is required for the scheme – mass amount of reports at the tip of our fingers. 
 
If we have asked for something to be added or some support we get it and quickly. 
 
I would 100% recommend Ascendant Solutions and will always think of them in the future." 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
Darren Smith, Finance Manager: Revenues & Benefits  
 
London Borough of Barnet 
 
"Ascendant via their Grant Approval software have revolutionised the way Local Authorities have been able to deliver Business Support Grants, ensuring support is provided to businesses across the country at the earliest possible opportunity. 
 
Nothing is too much trouble for Darren and every single member of his team in what has been an incredibly challenging 15 months. 
 
Grant Approval is easy to use and incredibly agile and I couldn’t recommend it enough. I look forward to seeing what other offerings Ascendant have as we work to recover from the pandemic.
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
Pathway 
Mark Fearn 
 
Walsall Council 
 
“Ascendant Solutions have created a real-time bespoke solution through significant advances in data sourcing and analytics to understand customers in much greater depth than ever before. With this insight, you can ensure customers are being treated fairly in line with what the data is saying and not the single route of old. The correct level of support can be put in place before the customer becomes financially distressed.” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
Phil Black, Revenues Manager  
Kate Limna, Corporate Treasurer  
 
City of London 
 
"We have been incredibly impressed and completely satisfied with the service we have received from Ascendant which has proved excellent value for money. 
 
The local grant scheme we implemented was quite bespoke but the application solution has met our requirements perfectly and we were able to implement it within weeks of the scheme design. 
 
The Ascendant Team have been excellent from start to finish and delivered easy to understand training as well as being on hand and available to assist us whenever help was needed." 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval with ERD 
Gaven Downton - Head of Council Tax, Business Rates and Housing Benefit Overpayment Recovery 
Christopher Hay - Business Rates Officer 
 
London Borough of Richmond and Wandsworth Councils 
 
“The Grant Approval portal revolutionised the way in which LB Richmond and LB Wandsworth were able to process grant applications. It is a flexible, efficient, well thought out product which allows the Local Authority to manage an end to end claim process knowing the logic is failsafe. 
 
Enabling selected businesses for access to each scheme meant claimants found the system easy to navigate despite the complicated nature of the Local Restriction Support Grants. 
 
Being able to create bespoke forms gives scope for relief application / review forms, etc and we have used this facility to devise our own ‘opt in / out’ Expanded Retail Discount declaration, accessed via the portal.” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
General 
Nick Ducatel, Functional Lead Growth and Prosperity  
 
Lewes District and Eastbourne Borough Councils 
 
"We are pleased to have extended our collaborative working relationship with Ascendant Solutions for a further year. 
 
Ascendant have proved to be a forward thinking and innovative data company who have provided intelligent data solutions and products such as Grant Approval and consumer debt profiling and collection techniques to support our collections. 
 
We have been able to administer and pay business grants quickly and efficiently, saving Eastbourne and Lewes Councils considerable resource and cost savings in the past year. 
 
Ascendant took the time to understand the challenges we have faced before and throughout the pandemic and have worked hard to develop data and IT solutions in a fast moving and agile way always seeking to proactively meet our requirements as well as providing exceptional customer service." 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
Louise Freeth - Head of Revenues, Benefits, Library and Resident Services 
 
Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead 
 
“I have to say that the experience with Ascendant to date has been exemplary. Without the solution offered by Ascendant, it is difficult to see how we would have coped with the administration of so many grants for businesses running in parallel. The fact that the system is self-contained has meant that we are able to ring fence this work and separate it from the day to day administration of business rates. Of particular benefit are the pre-built applications for national schemes and the fact that Ascendant have engaged directly with BEIS to remove some of the headaches associated with the ever increasing reporting demands.” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
AIM 
Paul White  
 
Leeds City Council 
 
“I can’t rate it highly enough, it’s now my first “go to” when I need to check if someone has occupied a property or are still resident, where they may have moved to, if we suspect a partner or lodger, etc is resident and not declared, or if we are looking at charging orders on properties and need to check if it’s for sale, where a property has been sold or let out to see who it was sold/let through so we can try and trace where former owners have moved to.” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval with ERD 
Kevin Stewart, Business Unit Leader, Revenues & Benefits  
 
Mid Sussex District Council 
 
"There are huge issues with an increasing number businesses overclaiming in grants when considering state aid and subsidy allowance. I believe it is very dangerous to just award the 66% discount without a verification process taking place to particularly check the new cash caps. A simple online claim form such as this protects the authority and the public purse." 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
Robin Bates - Head of LGSS Revenues and Benefits 
 
“The LGSS Revenues and Benefits Partnership have engaged Ascendant Solutions, at short notice on both the Business Grants process and the recent Test and Trace payments. Working with them as a partner in delivering these time-restricted support schemes has minimised the impact on our officers in terms of much of our thinking being supported by the development of form portals. Flexibility and a can do attitude where our requirements differ across our partner organisations has also been a massive benefit.” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
 
Kevin Stewart, Business Unit Leader, Revenues & Benefits  
 
Mid Sussex District Council 
 
"As a Council we have given out nearly £42m in over 6,000 grants in the last 13 months and without the flexibility and impact of Grant Approval has been vital to us as a Council to vitally help local businesses in their greatest need in a hundred years.” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
Hive 
Phillip Mawson  
 
Leeds City Council 
 
"Following an exercise to review all 100% Small Business Rates Relief cases using Hive, it was determined that in a significant number of instances companies that had been either dissolved or liquidated continuing to be billed, in some cases as far back as four to five years. Further enquiries will now be made to establish the current occupier or the property owner will be billed for the empty property rates." 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
Pathway 
Mark Fearn  
 
Walsall Council 
 
"We were looking to improve our Council Tax collection processes especially in the area of vulnerability and ensuring that recovery action is taken in the most appropriate manner. Our profiling of customers has been developed with Ascendant Solutions from October 2019 and felt the use of the VRS data allows us to identify the most vulnerable at an early stage and tailor the communication strategy to the best outcome for both sides." 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
Tim Whelan - Director of Service Delivery 
 
Lewes District and Eastbourne Borough Councils 
 
“With the pressure to deliver grant aid to businesses, at pace, many authorities collected the data required on a web form and then manually processed the applications. By using Grant Approval an automated system by Ascendant Solutions we significantly reduced the staff resource required, prevented fraudulent applications and got the payments to most businesses within four working days of an application, supporting our local economy.” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
James Skeldon - Revenues Manager 
 
Dudley Metropolitan District Council 
 
“Dudley MBC started using Ascendant Solutions for the administration of Business Rates Grants from the national lockdown period commencing in November 2020. The Grant Approval system streamlines the application process, allowing confident and efficient checking of applications, resulting in businesses receiving payments in a timely manner. The technical team are always on hand to assist with the setup of new schemes or making amendments to existing ones, providing a step by step walk throughs to ensure comprehensive understanding of the product and its capabilities” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
AIM 
Gurdish Kaur  
 
Walsall Council 
 
"With the help of Ascendant, we were able to prove a customer had been creating fake tenants in an attempt to defraud the council of tax over the space of 5 years. The customer was changing their name by deed poll multiple times to create the credit a footprint of a customer that never existed. The customer has now accepted liability for £6,000 in council tax, paying a large upfront sum with an arrangement set up for the remainder. Without Ascendant’s services, we would still be investigating today." 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
AIM 
Stephanie Barrance - Revenues Inspector  
 
Runnymede Borough Council. 
 
"Using AIM, means I no longer have to visit a property I am investigating, as I know exactly what is there and often send the advert to the valuation office for their review when making our reports. 
 
The information is brilliant as it lists the address, it also has filtered everything and has historical listings, something we would not be able to find without the AIM platform. 
 
Occasionally I get sent queries from customer services asking if I can check whether a property is furnished or not, obviously this is not always easy as properties are not always accessible. 
 
With properties that have been listed for rent/sale I can find the advert which will list whether the property is furnished or not. If it’s not clear AIM will list the estate agent that we then contact directly to make enquiries. 
 
Our Recovery department use AIM when investigating properties in our borough. We can use the information to match the dates that occupants have vacated. 
 
AIM is really helpful to my role and saves me time investigating annexes and empty, unfurnished properties." 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
Geraldine Goodwin - Revenues Manager 
 
Mark Scanes - Systems & Technical Manager 
 
North Hertfordshire District Council 
 
"Mark and I would like to extend our thanks for the superbly efficient service that we at NHDC, have received from you and the Team, with regard to the Ascendant product particularly in relation to Business Grants. The system does exactly what we need it too and the support that we have had from Ascendant has been exceptional. Nothing is too much trouble and you are very quick to call individual meetings to rectify any queries” 
Testimonials for Ascendant Solutions
GrantApproval 
Liane Tew - Local Taxation & Benefits Manager  
 
Wealden District Council 
 
“Having administered the small business and retail, hospitality and leisure grants manually, using Ascendant for the discretionary grants was a welcomed solution that made them so simple. All the information we needed was there at the click of a few buttons. The portal was easy to use and made the administration and payment of the grants quick and easy once a decision had been made. The flexibility we had when building the discretionary schemes was extremely useful as we were in control of what we wanted to ask and what information we needed. The Ascendant team are extremely helpful and any questions are quickly answered and any changes needed are made seamlessly. For me, there was no question who we would look to when the Test & Trace payments scheme came out. Again, excellent product and service.” 
GrantApproval 
Miriam Nicholls - Business Development Manager 
 
Arun District Council 
 
Grant Approval has been a life saver for us. The pressure to administer grants, particularly Discretionary Grants, was immense and the system provided us with a solution that not only safeguarded public funds but allowed us to assess grants in the shortest possible time and support our local businesses when they most needed it. Many businesses contacted us to thank us for the swift way in which their applications were dealt with and that’s down to great team work with Grant Approval. 
 
We are now pleased to be working with Ascendant Solutions to find other ways in which such a powerful tool can be used. As always, they are receptive to ideas and agile – what more could we ask for. 
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