Strategy Team update

Posted: 27th October 2011

Strategy Team update

Altair’s strategy team comprises four exceptionally experienced consultants. Led by Dr Fiona Underwood, the team brings new ideas and approaches to the housing sector from their varied backgrounds.

In early 2011, Fiona joined with Susan Kane, Chris Wood and Steve Douglas in starting Altair Ltd. Fiona’s career path has led to the development of a wide range of skills, built from her experience of working and consulting in multiple sectors, including at the CBI responsibilities for best practice, business performance and benchmarking.

Her work within the housing sector focuses on working with boards and executive teams: advising and facilitating strategic and corporate reviews; understanding and solving complex governance issues; organisational development and restructuring; mentoring board members and executives; project managing change programmes; leading merger discussions and implementation, and general business improvement.

Fiona has significant experience of working with the regulator on a wide variety of issues needing regulatory approval, including merger, board constitution and where action is enforced or threatened. She has acted as interim Chief Executive for a housing association in supervision working with the appointees, board and regulator to tackle the serious issues that had caused the enforced action. She also sat on the TSA New Regulatory Framework advisory panel in 2009.

Fiona also has experience within the private sector of mergers [through acquisition] and leading large scale transformations and change management programmes. Contact Fiona on 07788 643092 or

Michael Appleby, Consultant, has delivered large organisational change projects in local government, housing and the private sector. Qualified in human resources, and with a degree in psychology, Michael brings his understanding of human behaviour to the fore in consultancy projects such as cost reduction, performance improvement and benchmarking. Contact Michael on 07545 314749 or

Mark Sweeny, Senior Consultant, has profound knowledge of the benefits that IT can bring to housing and local authorities, acquired during his experience as an adviser at ICL Fijitsu and as Head of IT and IS for a national social housing organisation. As a consultant Mark brings knowledge from across all dimensions: front-line, executive and non-executive. His work within the housing sector, while focusing on strategy, governance and service management, also includes mentoring senior managers, project managing change programmes and general service improvement. Mark is fully qualified in Prince 2 and MSP programme management. Contact Mark on 07887 512165 or

Judy Wayne, Director, leads our services in Wales. Judy has a strong track record of helping organisations transform and grow. She has advised governments and organisations, including the Welsh and Polish governments, on policy, regulation, housing asset transfer and housing management., She has worked extensively with local authorities, to assess stock options and deliver stock retention or transfer policies, and with residents and tenants groups on service improvement. She regularly provides bid support and advice to Registered Providers on growth projects and partnership developments. Judy’s particular strengths include thinking strategically and creatively, turning ideas into realistic propositions and leading their implementation with boards and executive teams. Judy can be contacted on 07880 606067 or

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