Facilitating teamwork in the NHS via an online social networking platform Sarah Bodell, Jackie Taylor, Ken Levins, Kate Ha...
<ul><li>This work is a collaboration between the University of Salford and Lancashire Care Fundation Trust. </li></ul>
Michelle McEvoy Clinical Specialist for Occupational Therapy . <ul><li>My family, my friends, crafting, cooking and being ...
Kate Hallsall Clinical Specialist Occupational Therapist/ Restart and Recovery Manager <ul><li>Being in the thick of it - ...
Ken Levins Clinical Specialist Occupational Therapist/ Restart and Recovery Manager <ul><li>There are few things in life t...
Background to the project <ul><li>Teamworking is a challenge </li></ul><ul><li>It is a particular challenge for LCFT </li>...
The Prototype Approach www.designingprojectmanagement.com/ images
The Project Plan <ul><ul><ul><li> Pitch idea  </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Seek ‘early adopters’ </li></ul></ul>...
So what was the feedback?
What was your initial reaction on being invited to join the project ? <ul><li>When I received the initial e mail the proje...
<ul><ul><ul><li> Feeling of excitement </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Hopeful of  positive impact  on working prac...
Why did you volunteer to be part of the initiative? <ul><li>A slightly competitive part of my personality wanted to say ‘o...
<ul><ul><ul><li>Sense of challenge associated with being involved in a new initiative </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>...
How did you decide if you were a novice or an expert? <ul><ul><ul><li>Perceived self efficacy of pc use </li></ul></ul></u...
What, at this stage, did you think NING had to offer? <ul><ul><ul><li>Increased opportunity for networking with colleagues...
How involved did you become, and what impacted on this? <ul><li>‘ I must admit I hid at the least conspicuous computer in ...
<ul><ul><ul><li>Active promoter, based on confidence and commitment to the project (expert) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><u...
Did you gain anything from your involvement in the project? <ul><li>The lack of response from others on the network was a ...
<ul><ul><ul><li>Opportunity to work with new people, and to further professional thinking </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul>...
Given your experiences, do you feel  social networking has a place in facilitating teamworking and collaboration in the NH...
<ul><ul><ul><li>Promotion of teamwork </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Development of the profile and quality of OT loc...
How could we do it better? <ul><li>I expected there to be challenges in making the network happen and without these challe...
<ul><ul><ul><li>Requires ‘sign up’ from all involved staff, including managers. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>IT sys...
Conclusion <ul><ul><ul><li>There is a role for online networking in the NHS as identified by clinical staff. </li></ul></u...
And finally… <ul><li>‘ NING was a new colleague for me that brought me closer to my work colleagues when the need was ther...
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Facilitating teamwork in the NHS via an online social networking platform

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Sarah Bodell and Jackie Taylor, OT educators from the University of Salford, discuss feedback from a social networking project with clinicians from the Lancashire Care Foundation Trust. COT Annual Conference 2010 (22-25 June 2010)

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  • Team working has significant benefits in relation to service development (Borrill et al 2000) however effective team working can be difficult to achieve (Hall, 2005). NHS organizations are therefore being encouraged to consider the use of online social networking sites as potential fertile breeding ground for the development of innovative services (NHS Faculty of Health Informatics 2008). Mason and Rennie (2008) suggest that any group of individuals who have a relationship with each other can be described as a social network. Lancashire Care Foundation Trust Adult Network meets this criteria as it is comprised of 150 mental health occupational therapists spread over a large geographical area. who share a common goal of service development. During a band &amp; training initiative it was noted that team working could be improved, and may enhance job satisfaction and also impact positively on th development and delivery of care. Whilst the Trust was keen to embrace online networking, in collaboration with the University of Salford, a number of &amp;quot;readiness&amp;quot; factors were considered including cultural, legal, managerial and technical issues (NHS Faculty of Health Informatics 2008).
  • In order to progress the project expediently it was decided to adopt a prototyping approach (Dziag 2009) of do, evaluate and refine. The advantages of this approach are that projects can be initiated expediently, and can be considered a work in progress, however the disadvantages are that for those involved, there may be many bumps and frustrations along the way. The challenge is to measure the risk of this against the cost of attempting to generate a ‘perfect product’ prior to beginning a project. Given that this initiative in an innovation, and does not have an extensive body of knowledge to guide us, we decided that this approach would allow us to test a model for future development. The risks were minimised by using a small number of therapists who volunteered knowing that it was a work in progress. Once we had a model that seemed reasonable it would be opened to a second select group, albeit staff who has not expressed a specific interest. Feedback would be gained from the 4 ‘early adopters. 1 expert networker and 3 novices.
  • When I received the initial e mail the project sounded beneficial and somewhat pioneering. Reading about the NING project was really quite refreshing and I felt the potential was unlimited. It’s not often you receive e-mails requesting support to promote and establish a social networking site within an NHS environment. I was very excited to firstly know that this project was underway and how it’s existence could possible help me in my working practice, but also the fact that Sarah and Jackie had requested support to make this happen excited me more since I had the opportunity to contribute to what I felt was a new innovation in our service. On receiving the invitation to join the Ning project it was something that I immediately felt quite excited about. I was drawn by the chance firstly to be involved in a research project and secondly to be part of being at the fore front of a new technical development.
  • I made my decision to volunteer for a number of reasons. Firstly, i enjoy the challenge of participating in new projects and being a novice to social networking I knew this would be so I decide to volunteer for two reasons; firstly, the NING project was a very achievable project that could alter the working practices for myself and many of my colleagues due to the often numerous amounts of meetings we may need to attend at any given time. Secondly, I wanted to be involved in contributing to a project that put occupational therapy in a spot light that showed we are forward thinking and willing to make that happen. As an occupational therapist I pride my profession as being skilled individuals in thinking around problem and I felt this was a fantastic opportunity for our services to demonstrate that. By volunteering in the project I hoped to gain some personal and professional development through the experience and learning the processes for planning, implementing and completing such a great and challenging project. But most of all I believed the project was new, sharp, forward thinking and suited my mind set, all things that excite me in my professional practice. I was drawn by the chance firstly to be involved in a research project and secondly to be part of being at the fore front of a new technical development. Not being terribly IT literate the latter was also a chance to introduce myself to new skills and being pragmatic in nature the opportunity to learn something through experience was very attractive. I also thought that it would be interesting to be part of the beginning of something which I thought could � be big � in the future and embarrassingly, a slightly competitive part of my personality wanted to say � oh yes I was part of that system being set up � in the years to come!
  • I hoped my exposure would allow me to demonstrate my working knowledge if needed. Luckily for me Sarah and Jackie agreed and ask for my input to be at an expert level. Having being given the choice of identifying myself as a novice or expert it I instinctively choice the former. This was based on mostly my lack of confidence and self belief that I can use a pc and the fact that I didn’t really understand the terminology that phrases such as � social networking � meant. In truth I was more adept than I believed myself to be having had previous experience using a music festival network site – I just hadn’t considered this to be the same kind of thing.
  • Professionally I hoped that Ning would offer me an opportunity to create links with other OTs within the Trust. I also was optimistic that it would create networking opportunities with not only colleagues but the University as well. I had/have high hopes that it would/will give opportunities to share knowledge, debate issues, answer queries and brain storm problems. It also sounded like fun and could potentially provide support at times when immediate colleagues are not in a position to offer it. The networking site I believed would allow us the opportunity to still maintain the level of communication required but without having to spend as much travelling to various venues. I also felt that the project would be of great benefit to me in my working life i.e. reduced time spent travelling to and attending meetings and access to a plethora of knowledge and opinions from my peers.
  • Once the network was up and running my involvement was more as an active promoter to ensure my colleagues joined/accessed the network and through constant reinforcement of the strengths of our network in our work place. I believe my level of involvement was a result of my confidence and keen interest to make this project happen. As time progressed I became more involved, but this varied depending on how co-operative the IT system was being, how busy I was and if I could get access to a pc (being somewhat short of these within the department). I also think that as this point I couldn’t completely give myself permission to spend time on Ning which felt more like play than work. The number of false starts and difficulty accessing the site was particularly frustrating and impacted upon my initial motivation to participate in the project. My level of involvement was (lower) due to the wider group also having difficulty with access. This meant that a full discussion of topics was not possible and it did not seem worthwhile starting discussions that were then going to be discussed at meetings anyway. The initial teething problem experienced settings up the network were at times frustrating and disappointing since most of our initial false starts were due to IT problems. On commencing Ning I found it frustrating, difficult and time consuming due to the Trust network being particularly awkward. It also felt � naughty � somehow using work time to � mess about on the computer to contact my buddies in West Lancs. � If anyone saw what I was doing I was very keen to point out to them exactly what was going on as if to justify my actions. No one really commented except to ask when it would be available Trust wide or to say that they wished their profession had such a forum. Still, with all these factors I decided to set up my account at home first. As I have mentioned earlier I am a bit nosey and enjoy the social stories of my friend on other social networking sites, so accessing our network was kind of second nature. However this was not the case for everyone else in our service. I noticed that forum topics were not having the response or input we had expected and when this question was asked it did appear that people were cautious of participating in the unknown. Once people took that first step activity increased and the project was up and running.
  • It gave me the opportunity to work with people I may never have met in my normal role and it also allowed my colleagues and myself the facility to engage in discussions (through the network) that have altered my ways of thinking both personally and professionally. My involvement in the NING project to date was an experience that has helped me to take that next step forward to being involved with a larger project, increased my communication skills and thought me to be forward thinking in my ideas and not give in if I fall at the first hurdle but jump higher. Communicating online was great fun! I had many laughs reading others messages and particularly enjoyed my interactions with one of the university staff who had misinterpreted one of my comments! – It taught me to be careful how I phrase things in future, luckily that proved to be a positive and enjoyable learning experience on this occasion. One of the more surreal moments was meeting Sarah in person – we said hello and chatted for about five minutes as if we knew each other already before acknowledging that we had never actually met and probably should have introduced ourselves. This I think proves the usefulness of networking on line – we had got over all the awkward introductions prior to our meeting and could move to the next stage of social interaction. What I have gained from Ning is the excitement from being involved in something new and novel. I have gained insight into how we can use technology and how we under use the facilities and resources available. I have been pleasantly surprised that despite the practical set backs that the system is not too difficult to use and that even someone who is technically limited can quickly become adept in social networking. I have gained some new practical skills in uploading and inputting. I have also made new contacts with people I would not have normally had opportunity to be in touch with. It has helped forge the way for future clinicians to set up similar projects which can draw from our experiences both positive and negative.
  • I still feel that this way of working would be of significant benefit, particularly so in a trust like ours that is spread over such a large geographical area. A project such as this offers great value in promoting team working. I would feel very confident justifying others using the site because I genuinely believe it to be something that could be of immense value. I feel positive that if promoted correctly that this could be something that will be of help in the future when developing locally and nationally the profile and quality of Occupational Therapy in the ever changing and developing world of Healthcare As occupational therapist we are all too often a single practitioner within a team and support both clinical and social is essential to helping the individual maintain role identity. Within a large Trust such as Lancashire Care there are issues in disseminating ideas about systems, best practice and local developments. A project such as this can help reduce distance between OTs so that a clear Trust wide identity can be achieved which is consistent wherever the person works. I can also see this as a valuable tool to assist new members of staff to the Trust, as described earlier social networking can speed up the formation of relationships and this could help improve communication between different teams. Whilst the � fun, socialising � element of the project may seem a little trivial I believe that having this type of contact with other individuals in the Trust can aid working relationships which are all too often limited by prejudices created by unfamiliarity. As a manager of a team it is useful to have a drop in forum that I can get queries answered or debated. The information received can then be quickly disseminated locally. In relation to this point it would be helpful if senior managers used Ning so they could contribute their views or directives.
  • In short I think it is a valuable way of working but requires commitment from the service to be effective rather than just a few clinicians. I feel the experience of Ning may have been improved by the IT systems being tried and tested prior to the project beginning although I did learn from this process. It would have also been helpful if line managers had been briefed about the project which may have helped reduce the guilty feelings, this may have also pushed me a bit more into making rather that grabbing time to work on the Ning project. I think I did feel a level of irritation that others involved in the project were as inconsistent as me accessing the site and therefore the activity peaked and troughed which did not really inspire me to keep Ning in the forefront of my mind. Perhaps it would have been good for us to sign up to some kind of agreement when commencing the project stating that we would allocate so much time each week to going online and inputting onto the forum. It would also have been productive to spend more time establishing serious clinical discussions rather than the fun but limited chit chat that we only really seemed to get as far as. Maybe this too may have been resolved by a pre-project agreement for the participants. I think that should this progress from a project to an established part of my job role then I would need to make a concerted effort to timetable Ning into my daily routine. The project may have worked better if more importance had been placed on it by management and it was used as a time efficient way to replace other commitments.
  • Facilitating teamwork in the NHS via an online social networking platform

    1. 1. Facilitating teamwork in the NHS via an online social networking platform Sarah Bodell, Jackie Taylor, Ken Levins, Kate Hallsall, Michelle McEvoy
    2. 2. <ul><li>This work is a collaboration between the University of Salford and Lancashire Care Fundation Trust. </li></ul>
    3. 3. Michelle McEvoy Clinical Specialist for Occupational Therapy . <ul><li>My family, my friends, crafting, cooking and being organized  ( I might be an actual domestic goddess or just boring!!) </li></ul>
    4. 4. Kate Hallsall Clinical Specialist Occupational Therapist/ Restart and Recovery Manager <ul><li>Being in the thick of it -   whether its shouting up for Occupational Therapy in busy places, cheering kids on at footie or watching bands in muddy fields dressed in wellies I ’ ll be there in the middle of it!! </li></ul>
    5. 5. Ken Levins Clinical Specialist Occupational Therapist/ Restart and Recovery Manager <ul><li>There are few things in life that can change someone's day so easily as a smile or the chance to escape their thoughts by laughing. I like to try and make this happen every day, for at least one person. </li></ul>
    6. 6. Background to the project <ul><li>Teamworking is a challenge </li></ul><ul><li>It is a particular challenge for LCFT </li></ul><ul><li>UoS experience of online ‘social networking </li></ul><ul><li>This may be a solution </li></ul><ul><li>No precedents set </li></ul>
    7. 7. The Prototype Approach www.designingprojectmanagement.com/ images
    8. 8. The Project Plan <ul><ul><ul><li> Pitch idea </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Seek ‘early adopters’ </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Engage support of learning technologists at UoS </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Identify a relevant social networking platform </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Engage users </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Evaluate user experience </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Refine </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Share </li></ul></ul></ul>
    9. 9. So what was the feedback?
    10. 10. What was your initial reaction on being invited to join the project ? <ul><li>When I received the initial e mail the project sounded beneficial and somewhat pioneering (Michelle McEvoy) </li></ul>
    11. 11. <ul><ul><ul><li> Feeling of excitement </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Hopeful of positive impact on working practices </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Pleased to be offered the opportunity to be part of, and to contribute to, something new and innovative </li></ul></ul></ul>
    12. 12. Why did you volunteer to be part of the initiative? <ul><li>A slightly competitive part of my personality wanted to say ‘oh yes I was part of that system being set up’ in the years to come! (Kate Hallsall) </li></ul>
    13. 13. <ul><ul><ul><li>Sense of challenge associated with being involved in a new initiative </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sense of pride and excitement associated with being in at ‘the start of something big’ </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Hope of personal and professional development </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Opportunity for occupational therapy to be shown as forward thnking and innovative. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Opportunity to be involved in research </li></ul></ul></ul>
    14. 14. How did you decide if you were a novice or an expert? <ul><ul><ul><li>Perceived self efficacy of pc use </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Perceived understanding of terminology </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Perceived previous experience of use of social media </li></ul></ul></ul>
    15. 15. What, at this stage, did you think NING had to offer? <ul><ul><ul><li>Increased opportunity for networking with colleagues and with the University </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Opportunity for knowledge sharing, discussion and debate. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Opportunity for peer support </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Reduce traveling time to meetings </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Fun! </li></ul></ul></ul>
    16. 16. How involved did you become, and what impacted on this? <ul><li>‘ I must admit I hid at the least conspicuous computer in the office, hiding the screen like a teenager looking at porn!’ (Michelle McEvoy) </li></ul>
    17. 17. <ul><ul><ul><li>Active promoter, based on confidence and commitment to the project (expert) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>More involved over time, constrained by access to pc, It issues, and workload </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Self perception of NING as ‘play � rather than work lead to reduced participation </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Concern that other would judge it as ‘play’ laed to reduced participation </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>IT problems were a real de-motivator </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Lack of participation by a critical mass was a demotivator as the value of the network was reduced. </li></ul></ul></ul>
    18. 18. Did you gain anything from your involvement in the project? <ul><li>The lack of response from others on the network was a bit disheartening. </li></ul><ul><li>When the response did start to trickle through I felt quite excited, like opening birthday cards, and really pleased with myself for conquering the IT system Michelle McEvoy </li></ul>
    19. 19. <ul><ul><ul><li>Opportunity to work with new people, and to further professional thinking </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Increased/developed online communication skills </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Opened doors to other projects </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Facilitated face to face working relationships </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Developed insight into the potential of technology </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Developed new practical computer skills </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Pleased with own level of competence </li></ul></ul></ul>
    20. 20. Given your experiences, do you feel social networking has a place in facilitating teamworking and collaboration in the NHS? <ul><li>YES! </li></ul>
    21. 21. <ul><ul><ul><li>Promotion of teamwork </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Development of the profile and quality of OT locally and nationally </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Enhancement and sharing of best practice </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Provision of support for new staff members </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Fostering working relationships and bringing personalities closer together </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Promotion of discussion and debate </li></ul></ul></ul>
    22. 22. How could we do it better? <ul><li>I expected there to be challenges in making the network happen and without these challenges I would not have learned anything from my experience. As a result of our experiences I hope we can support others to complete similar projects quicker and more effectively. (Ken Levins) </li></ul>
    23. 23. <ul><ul><ul><li>Requires ‘sign up’ from all involved staff, including managers. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>IT systems should be tested prior to roll out </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Line managers should be briefed as to the purpose of the online network, and levels of participation required. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Have a clear and meaningful reason to use the site. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Allocate time to access the site </li></ul></ul></ul>
    24. 24. Conclusion <ul><ul><ul><li>There is a role for online networking in the NHS as identified by clinical staff. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The prototyping approach had value in this context </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The next stage of the project will build on issues identified during this one. </li></ul></ul></ul>
    25. 25. And finally… <ul><li>‘ NING was a new colleague for me that brought me closer to my work colleagues when the need was there.’ Ken Levins. </li></ul>

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