Employee Spotlight: Meet Tara
In February, we sat down with OCH’s the new Manager of Tenancy Administration, Tara. She works out of the Chapel and Murray Street offices. Right now, due to a staff shortage, she is responsible for Central and West.
Tara originally applied to an open maintenance worker position before she was hired to her current job four months ago.
Q: What drew you to OCH?
I did work at Help Age Canada, the Lowertown Community Resource Centre, and worked my way up to Executive Director at Governor’s Walk Retirement Residence. I loved my work at Governor’s Walk, but I wanted to return to a not-for-profit environment. I was able to give back to the community in a lot of ways while I was there, but it was about the bottom line. I wanted to get back to my roots, so I applied for an open maintenance position at OCH and was directed to apply for the MTA job.
Q: What does a typical day look like for you?
There is no typical day for an MTA. While there is a job description, I am not sure you can capture everything that we do. Each MTA supervises a subset of staff who work in tenant services. Some examples include Housing Administrators, and Rental Coordinators, in addition to the Tenant Debt Reconciliation Coordinators.
Basically, any tenant escalation that walks through the door, I am responsible for. I also work with unit turnovers. One of my jobs is ensuring that vacant homes are prepped as soon as 30 days after a tenant leaves and are occupied within 45 days of being vacated. Another task is making sure the call queue is staffed with a Rental Coordinator during business hours, Monday to Friday.
Q: What are some of the challenges you face in your role?
It can be a challenge when something a tenant is facing is beyond our capabilities as a landlord. Sometimes you want to do more but can’t. It can also be challenging because some of the tenants who need the most help, are not as comfortable with using their voice and advocating for themselves.
Q: What are some of your favourite things about your position?
The position is so interesting. I never get bored. I also like how you can sign up to participate in activities or projects that interest you. It allows me to network and develops my skills.
Q: What is something very few people know about you?
I love true crime. I took a course on serial killers in university – understanding criminology and genetics. I watch all the documentaries on Netflix and A&E.