There is no other option for me – why encouraging staff to own the improvement process makes all the difference
An interview with Dr Amar Shah, ELFT QI
We talk to Dr Amar Shah, Chief Quality Officer at East London NHS Foundation Trust about the benefits they’ve noticed since using the ImproveWell solution.
Around three years ago, the Trust brought in a new programme called “Enjoying Work” which helped teams to take a deeper dive into the things that really contribute to their experience at work. Partnering with ImproveWell fitted right into this work.
“Our strategy is aimed at improving the quality of life of all of the people that we serve, which includes our staff – it’s one of our objectives,” Shah explains. “We’ve now had over 50 teams take part in this programme and we’ve got stories from all of those teams about the richness of coming together as a team, talking about this topic because often it’s not even talked about – and looking at the things that really contribute to us having a great day at work, and the things that get in the way. Focusing on what matters to our staff and giving them the power, the method and the tools to be able to make changes to the way they work together is very powerful. ImproveWell really is a great enabler for us to capture people’s experience in real time… a single, simple place for people to share ideas… to be able to have the autonomy and control to be able to make a difference.”
And then the pandemic hit. “It’s going to be even more important, I think, for our teams to really have space for reflection and support… to maintain the resilience of the team” Shah says. “Even when we have a way out of this, the mental health sequelae are likely to last for a lot longer for many of us.” We are all going to have to find ways of coping, making sense of a huge trauma, while simultaneously moving the health service on. ImproveWell is ideally placed to help with this vital job by its very accessibility – in the palm of your hand.
Support for the supporters
How did the Trust’s adoption of the app come about? “I got to know the ImproveWell team three or four years ago when we were first thinking of applying Quality Improvement to improve staff experience,” Shah explains. “We were looking for some innovative ways that we could support our teams with this work and it’s been an absolute joy to work with the team. They’ve been really responsive in working with us to make sure we tailor the platform so that really works at the enterprise level. We knew that we needed something that would help teams to really own this process and see their data in the particular way that we do when we’re thinking about improvement – as run charts and data over time – and also to be able to view their qualitative data. As an organisation we also needed to be able to capture and aggregate the data and support large numbers of teams working on the programme at the same time.” It certainly had the potential to be a highly complex project. Which is why a simple interface and well-thought-out parameters have simplified the mission.
“We’ve been really pleased with the partnership we have with ImproveWell. They’ve supported us to be able to use the app and keep improving the way we use it but also the partnership has hopefully helped improve the platform along the way too.”
“For a healthcare leader, there is little that trumps looking after the wellbeing of our staff. When we were thinking about how to support multiple teams at scale, we were delighted to partner with ImproveWell in designing a digital platform to support measurement over time, bespoke surveys and idea generation. We’re proud to have worked with such a thoughtful and skilful team in creating a product that we hope will support healthcare organisations across the globe to enhance joy in work.”
In a nutshell
“There is no other option for me, and it’s a really great design, very simple app, and super service from the team so that’s why we’ve been so pleased to use it and will keep on using it.”
Connect with Dr Amar Shah on LinkedIn
Discover more about the East London NHS Foundation Trust