The NCSC was a new body which formed part of a network of regulation aimed at improving the standard of health and social care and ensuring the safety of users. When it came into being it was staffed by transferees from Local and Health Authorities and new recruits. The legislation had changed recently and significantly, and it was vital that both transferring and new Inspectors and their support staff interpreted and applied the new standards consistently and fairly. In addition to the new legislation were new job descriptions, IT systems, roles, processes, location and people (there was a major recruitment campaign carried out involving induction in addition to job related training). A key operational problem was that training needed to be delivered prior to their transfer, ie whilst they were still employed by a local authority. This led to release problems, who pays the expenses etc etc, all of which had to be dealt with prior to training.
The very tight timescales demanded that we field a team of fourteen trainers and delivered over thirty events per month nationally. So the logistics alone required operational analysis to optimise the delivery schedule.
We also designed a training support website which was accessed via our own website or from the main Department of Health website.
Other elements to support effective delivery of this project included:
We analysed, designed and delivered one and two-day workshops for five different groups of staff, totalling circa 2000. Our TNA involved discussions with many and various stakeholders including service users, service providers, the Anglia Polytechnic University (who were providing the subject matter expertise in the care sector and developed the workbooks and new associated professional qualification), Bevan Ashford, a firm of commercial lawyers specialising in this area and, of course, the client’s head of legal services.
This was the most challenging aspect of the project. Analysis of trainer feedback helped identify any ‘across the board issues’ and we designed in the use of ‘Issues Boards’ to deflect problems and issues raised over which we had no control — but our quality process ensured that each and every problem and issue raised was fed back to the NCSC and dealt with. Different areas had different operational problems and the management of those to ensure that all Inspectors were interpreting and applying the law consistently was one of the major successes of the project.
This project was completely successful in achieving all its objectives. Its outstanding success was recognised in two significant ways; firstly we won a contract with the Care Standards Institute for Wales for developing and delivering similar but different workshops, including translation into welsh and also won a contract with the Scottish Commission for the Regulation of Care. Secondly we won, in competition with several other companies including, for example, PWC, the WOLCE Blended Product of the Year Award.
In terms of added value, the project outputs, support and management of the delivery process was of the highest standard. Without hesitation I can say that all our expectations were met and in many ways were exceeded.