Able to improve?

How front-line staff transform and use quality improvement skills and knowledge: a formative evaluation based on ethnographically informed case studies

  • Exploring the translation of improvement skills and knowledge gained through training, into action on the front line.
  • The team will work with front-line staff to help them and their organisations recognise and cultivate techniques to overcome the difficulties in applying the many skills needed for service improvement.
  • Due to complete in May 2017.

Contact: Laura Harper, Research Manager

The Health Foundation is working with John Gabbay and colleagues to explore the translation of improvement skills and knowledge gained through training, into action on the front line.

This project will be working with teams of staff from a range of service providers, all of whom are hoping to achieve specific evidence-based improvements in their service, and we will be trying to understand what helps and what hinders them in using their improvement skills, and why. The aim is to gain practical – and practicable – insights about the best ways to build up their skills in making improvements that actually take hold, and to pass those lessons on. 

The key questions the work aims to answer are:

  • Which improvement skills matter most, when and why?
  • What factors help or impede practitioners to use their improvement skills?
  • How and why do successful groups overcome the barriers/ capitalise on the facilitators, and what can be learnt from their successes?
  • How can the judicious sharing of such learning best help struggling groups to emulate those successes?
  • What lessons will help the Health Foundation to invest strategically in learning about improvement or undertake larger scale work in this field?

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