lga masterclass 2 video: digital culture change

We define an organisation’s culture as ‘how we do things around here’, and it’s our bread and butter as disruptors in the care tech space.

Our second #LGADigital masterclass was a chance to tackle to the topic head on, with our MD Irene Carson joining innovation leads from Kent and Norfolk County Councils in pulling apart exactly *how* organisational cultures can be changed.

So how do we create a culture than allows digital tech to be used, loved and trusted by our service users?

Watch the full masterclass below and join others via the events section of our website.

Georgia Goddard (00:02:30):
Thanks everyone for coming early. We’ll wait a few minutes for others to us. Morning, everyone. Thank you for coming on time. We’ll just wait a few more minutes. I can see people still entering.

Georgia Goddard (00:06:06):
Thank you everyone for coming. I’m very pleased to introduce this masterclass on digital culture change. It’s the second masterclass of five, which forms part of the Local Government Association CHIP Digital Support Programme. My name is Georgia. I’m from the LGA CHIP Digital team leading on this programme, which is funded by NHSX. It’s really great to be working with Rethink Partners on this programme. They make up two of our experts because today, but before we get to that, there are just a few ground rules. We can have the next slide, please.

Georgia Goddard (00:06:50):
Thank you. If you are having connectivity issues, we recommend you turn your videos off to ensure the best connection. And if you can also please put yourself on mute to avoid audio interference. That would be much appreciated. Please do hold questions until our Q and A at the end. However you add them in the chat as we go along. If you wish, if you do ask a question, please do feel free to state your name and organisation as well. We started recording this webinar as we’ll be sharing the recording alongside slides, materials, and Q and after the session. If you wish you can also tweet about this event online by the hashtag LGA digital, but please be aware if you do tweet that others may not wish to feature in these tweets. If I can start covering themes as well, please Al if you’re here for a masterclass on digital culture change or in the right place to just give you a brief idea of some of the themes we’ll be covering today first of all, what culture change and the importance of using technology? Well, how creating the conditions for success and culture change are linked and what you can do to influence them. We’re also really lucky to be hearing a direct experience from rethink partners and councils they worked with during COVID during the COVID response, doing this work and next slide, please.

Georgia Goddard (00:08:17):
We’re really lucky to have with us today, Irene Carson from Rethink Partners, Gina Walton from Kent County Council and Stephen Boddington from Norfolk County Council. But first, to introduce us. We have Rethink Partners, Clare Morris, who will be giving us an overview of digital culture change. So I’ll pass straight onto her. Thanks, Clare.

Clare Morris (00:08:40):
Lovely, thanks, Georgia. And welcome everybody. I’m going to be brief because I think as you experienced from masterclass one, there’s so much content from our speakers this morning. So I want to move as quickly as possible onto their content, so you can get the benefit of their direct experiences of doing this work. But we are delighted to be hosting this masterclass on digital culture change the appetite for content on culture change seems so insatiable and it’s very much the work that Rethink Partners do and love. This is our bread and butter. So we are in our sweet spot this morning. And I’m really pleased that my colleague Irene Carson will be sharing some of our expertise and experience of trying to manage culture change. Next slide please. El.

Clare Morris (00:09:33):
So what is culture? What is this thing we speak about often? So this is a definition from Skills of Care that’s particularly relevant to adult social care. And it’s really about leadership values, traditions, beliefs, behaviours, attitudes. Now these are mystical things. They are not hard objects we can point at. They are, they are in our hearts, they are in our heads. They are kind of around us and in the air that we breathe. And I think the culture is quite like air. You can’t see it, but you can feel it. It’s the sort of lifeblood and breath of organisations and how we all work. And we see its impacts you know, on windy days, we see what air can do when it moves and we feel culture all the time around us in our work, but it can be a tricky thing to know how to get hold of and how to influence.

Clare Morris (00:10:31):
And I know that Irene, Gina and Stephen are going to share some more content about how we might want to go about doing that next slide, please, El. But essentially we like to say culture is it’s how we do things around here. So it is active. It is the manifestation of our behaviours. It’s the conversations we have. It’s how we behave in meetings. But there are also some harder more tangible bits to our culture or that influence our culture. So things like our business processes, how easy it is to get technology approved and signed off how easy it is to access it. So that it does there are hard components to it as well. Now I love this little cartoon bit of light relief in the morning but it’s very easy to be cynical about culture change initiatives, and we will have all kind of seen those kind of corporately.

Clare Morris (00:11:32):
I think the, I love the, I predict they will be vapid slogans printed on notepads and maybe some useless meetings. Great. You know, and, and frankly, obviously that’s what we are try and completely to avoid in doing the work around digital culture change. So we don’t want a kind of cynical superficial approach to culture. We actually want to genuinely provide content, initiate conversations that really do shift people’s behaviour and attitudes. Over time, next slide, please, El. So particularly when we’re looking at technology adoption and technology take up the one thing I want you to take away from this masterclass today is that that activity is a transformation process. It is not an implementation process. So when we think about this work, we absolutely have to think of it as a process of change and as a journey through that . And that really is quite a significant shift.

Clare Morris (00:12:39):
So whilst there might be good project management and governance underneath it, it’s not just as simple to get technology adopted well and really embedded and at the heart of your adult social care operating model and your care and support planning process. It is a transformation journey. It’s not just enough as this slide says to have great technology. The great technology is there. It’s easy, it’s with us all the time, but how do we get it actually used, embedded, used, loved and trusted. Irene will use that phrase. And that’s the challenge that we have. We’ve just put up the latest in our series of podcasts, which is supporting this work and Norman Niven, who’s a tech entrepreneur had some really interesting stuff to say about this topic. And he basically said, you know, the technology, isn’t the thing. The technology is a route into a service and an objective.

Clare Morris (00:13:38):
So I would heartily recommend you have a little listen to Norman. He was a very interesting and provocative speaker. And Georgia has just posted in the chat, the link to that podcast. So if we want to liberate true value from using technology, we must think about these three things. It comes. So it fits best when we’ve got a really strong approach to strength based practice. It’s part of enabling and building on the capabilities that people have. It’s not a deficit model that we’re trying to do here. And then we need that culture change support to wrap around it, to bring it to. And whether you think you have the capabilities and expertise to do that in house, or whether you want some external help to buying commission culture change, I hope that what you’re going to see this morning will help you think, what, what is it that I want?

Clare Morris (00:14:29):
It’s no good just saying, I want culture change. How do I know what that support looks like? How do I know it’s good. How do I know it’s going to be effective. Next slide please, El. And changing culture is a journey. So with the technology itself in the context, digital transformation, it arrives, it’s suddenly there, you switch it on and it’s in your organisation and available. So there is less of a journey with the actual creation of the technology itself, but the journey that you want to take residents local people, families, and really particularly your social care workforce on is a journey. And you will take people at different points and people will start to get with the programme at different points on that journey. So you will start very much with your pioneers, your innovators, your early adopters.

Clare Morris (00:15:26):
And I’ve heard from a lot of you on the call and councils this challenge about endless pilots. We never quite get over piloting and moving into mainstream. And this diagram shows really clearly the challenge that there is at that early point and, and a chasm that sits there. So you can kind of get it going in small scale or with particular bits of technology or particular teams, but then how do you move on and out to mainstream and scale that across your organisation, and then ultimately across your system, working with voluntary sector partners, NHS housing so bear with us, but we will try and unpack how you move from small scale local pilots into a main stream focus on that. So I hope that’s kind of set the scene and whet your appetites for what’s to come. But Irene now is going to kind of really start to unpack how do we get hold of culture change? How do we influence it? So Irene over to you?

Irene Carson (00:16:30):
Lovely. Thanks very much. Good morning. I’m Irene Carson. I’m the managing director of Rethink Partners. If we just jump onto the next slide, please. Thank you very much. You can hopefully see our model for digital care technology culture change. So really excited to share this with you today. We fully expect that this will evolve keep evolving. So this has been very much informed by our work with dozens of councils over the last four years, lots of people trying to chip away at this agenda. But we’ve been involved in basically trying to unpick all the barriers for people working in this space, whether that is lack of shared and understood vision, strategy, funding, what roles to give people, the relationships and how everything connects. And I guess as well, just like those, those myths about tech adoption that the sector and society in general inadvertently keeps perpetuating.

Irene Carson (00:17:30):
So we’ve helped lots of councils navigate those barrier like bits of this continuum, I guess. And we’re working with some people now as well, looking at the fuller picture. So so I think somebody might have unmuted,their mic if everybody can just mute, that would be fantastic. Thank you. So culture change isn’t soft or ambiguous, and I think hopefully this model will give you a bit of a framework and a rationale and kind of perhaps a sequencing or certainly you can start to pick what you’re sequencing might be in terms of supporting your own plans for tech adoption. So I guess that’s really how, how you can design, mobilise, deliver and sustain digital culture change programmes. And that’s like the sort of the bottom line of this is it’s not a one hit thing.

Irene Carson (00:18:23):
You have to keep working at this forever. So at the top of the model, hopefully you can see the big objective. We want people to use trust and love technology. So that’s all people involved in this, people we’re supporting social care professionals, families, carers, everybody. And then we have underneath that nine conditions. So that’s the pink boxes. So these are the conditions that you need to create in order to overcome the barriers. All those barriers that we know are kind of out there. And there is a more detailed version of this, but we’re trying to keep this as succinct as possible today. And basically how do you overcome those barriers and achieve the impact that you need? And these are really the prerequisites for achieving that top objective. And of course, you’ll have lots of sub objectives within that top one as well.

Irene Carson (00:19:14):
So basically how do you create the conditions to make this stuff thrive? And then sitting underneath that in those blue boxes are we’ve got them in 12 bundles now of basically interventions, activities, inputs to achieve those nine conditions. You can see along the bottom where we’ve tried to map up and you may agree or disagree with how we’ve mapped them. You can move those out around quite a bit, but basically hat’s all the stuff that you need to be thinking about doing, to make this fly. And we believe that you need all of this stuff, you know, so to not do parts of this is really gonna hamper your efforts. So this tool is on the website, I think somebody has posted it in the chat, and there are lots of tools on that website.

Irene Carson (00:19:57):
We will be adding more. This is the second of five masterclasses, so there’s more to come as well. So if we just kinda move, I guess, right, to left I’m going try and do this as quickly as possible. But if you sort of look at, for example, how we would create the clarity for how your digital care technology links to your wider, strategic priorities, for example, that that would be supported by the following activities tapping into the right governance, or in most cases probably happen to create the right governance for this to thrive. So that’s how you sustain culture change, get your senior management buy-in, getting that governance right. And maintaining it and getting the comms and engagement channels, right. And of course, sharing the evidence for that, the outcomes, the performance, and everybody’s experience along there. Balancing the risk analysis.

Irene Carson (00:20:48):
So I think I think we’ve described it as that the intervention as “engage your experts and secure authorisation.” And this is something I think you need to do as early as possible. You need to be quite tactical and strategic about how you approach this in order to get the right people round table with the right buy-in because you want that process to be innovative you know, right from the get go. And I think the reason that is important is if you don’t have the right people there, you can end up creating inadvertently other risks that you just don’t need. And then resources, of course, people and money. You know, how are you going to deliver and invest in this? Do you know, what’s really required to deliver this agenda. You need to be able to make a confident and compelling case for it.

Irene Carson (00:21:35):
And of course that one is like completely intrinsically linked to all the others in the bundle. Flexible and appropriate procurement. Of course it goes without saying, but if you use a traditional cost versus a quality model and traditional evaluation framework, you’re probably going to get the lowest cost, but not the best value. So councils finding way to get around this, perhaps using dialogue with your market is an important part of that. So that’s the client, but they need to know that you’re able to work with your procurement colleagues and develop a process that will really enable it, which can be quite lengthy as well. So again, there there’s a tool for this on the website as well. Number five. I’m hoping to see this okay. So sourcing great technology through effective commissioning. So you can’t do it all yourself. I think building trust with providers, getting them to your horizon scanning, everybody’s really scared about like, you know, what’s, what’s coming next. Will I be out of date? And I think a great provider will, will work collaboratively with you, with your staff, with people in your community as well, make sure that you’ve got a democratic way to evolve your stake offer and respond rapidly to changes in the market.

Georgia Goddard (00:22:58):
Apologies everyone. It seems we’ve just lost Irene for the moment. Hopefully she’ll be joining us again soon.

Clare Morris (00:23:07):
I’ll carry on. <Laugh>

Clare Morris (00:23:12):
In a slightly unplanned way. So I think we were at, so we talked about procurement. We talked about getting great technology through effective commissioning and you know, we are huge fans of good quality commissioning, but the great technology was also really encouraging us to be kind of aspirational and ambitious in the tech offer that we want. Digital switchover is driving a lot of us to think quite fundamentally about our tech offer at the moment. And so, so being ambitious about both the types of technology that you’re commissioning and thinking about data and data platforms as part of that is a really kind of key component. And we know that there is the sort of blue box at the bottom there I’ll hand back to you in a moment Irene, which is about accessing an independent source of market and product knowledge.

Clare Morris (00:24:12):
This is the one box that we put in blue that we, we don’t think exists at the moment. And I know is, is something that a number of you really wish was available and, and have asked for. But we are hopeful that through the work of the LGA you can share and connect your own market knowledge and experience much more effectively and build your own network so that you are absolutely learning from each other. Both the specifics about products and providers, but also about approaches to the market, overall. Shall I hand back to you, Irene?

Irene Carson (00:24:49):
Sorry. my, my connectivity is letting me down again. So I think, did you just cover off the personalised approach to care planning? Yeah. Lovely. Thank you. So programme of support for digital adoption again, I guess this is the flagship one, this is the in the trenches, relentless, frankly, never ending work of having a rolling and adaptive programme of comms, engagement, training, and immersive experiences for staff and stakeholders. This isn’t a one off training course. You’ve got to think as creatively as possible and how, how you get kit, especially out to people so that they can actually have a play with it. And of course this leads to awareness. You want everybody to be aware of the benefits of technology and you need to know who those stakeholders are, which sounds really, really obvious, but actually that process of perhaps this, this is a good, a good one where external people can really support you to have that independent look at who really your stakeholders are, what you know, and how you segment them, what the channels you use to engage them.

Irene Carson (00:25:57):
Do you need to create new channels to engage with them. And how you sort of roll that out, you know, who are the priority ones and then how you keep sort of this, like the kind of layers of the onion moving out. That needs a lot of resource. And it’s a constant process. So accessing a managed service to install, support and manage the technology. So basically what, what’s your sourcing strategy? Every single council we’ve ever spoken to is, you know, concerned about how you keep pace with technology and actually sometimes it deters the work from happening. You know, I’ve definitely been speaking to people who are kinda saying it’s very difficult to know what horse to back was one phrase that really stuck in my head. And, you know, if back in a horse at all is what they should do.

Irene Carson (00:26:42):
And I guess it’s just a bit ,you know, sort of, there’s a bit of just get on with this as well. You know, you need to just like keep doing it, you know, empowering staff, most importantly, empowering your local people with technology. And just things like, you know, the people who are actually installing this technology in people’s homes, they need as much autonomy as possible. So building that trust with them, so that you feel confident that when they’re out there, if they spot other stuff, it’s possible for them to adapt requirements when they’re on site. Because circumstances in homes are obviously not always as expected. Given that I dropped out for a second, I’m hoping that I haven’t missed any of these. So I’m just gonna look to Clare to see if there’s any others I need to cover off.

Clare Morris (00:27:27):
I think you do a bit more on the benefits of making the reasoning awareness Irene…

Irene Carson (00:27:32):
Sorry you dropped out there,

Clare Morris (00:27:34):
Sorry. I think maybe a bit more about the awareness of benefits of care technology. I don’t feel we quite did that one justice.

Irene Carson (00:27:41):
Okay. so again, this is another one that is, is all about getting in there early, testing your framework for how that might work. It might, you know, it doesn’t have to be perfect at the beginning, but it’s that sort of early, you know, what is that we want to look at, what is the work that we want to track? And then….might change a little bit, but getting the right people involved so that you’re able to know triangulate stuff with the right teams and making sure that that is being reported and shared with everybody that you need to. And again, that’s back to the stakeholder mapping. It’s not just about you in the council of coercing within the council, many people that you wanna cover off there as well. So, so yeah, that’s a bit of a whistlestop tour through this.

Irene Carson (00:28:27):
And as I say, we fully expect that this will evolve and keep evolving. And I’m sure that lots of you, that we come into contact with all the time and particularly in this programme just now will really influence our thinking again, as that moves forward. And there is lots more detail sitting behind this, for example, taking each stakeholder group and having a bit of a kind of nested theory of change for each of them as well. But perhaps that’s something that we’ll share at a future date. And, you know, we really love that LGA have commissioned this in such a way that everything is being open source. You know, the whole point is we want to share knowledge. We want everybody to, to access to you know, everything that, that we have collectively learned along the way. So we have, as I said at the start, we’ve advised people at kind of all different parts of this.

Irene Carson (00:29:15):
If we kinda see it as a continuum. And, and there’s one particular programme, which is Suffolk County Council, and that’s the Cassius countywide care tech deployment. I say they are really great and interesting example of doing the whole lot. As, as one, you know, it started as an initial three year programme. And so they have very much influenced this model. And I would say, you know, in four months for them, they delivered 1.5 million pounds worth of savings, 500 referrals, customer satisfaction at 96%. And that wasn’t just because, you know, the tech was right, the fulfilment strategy was right, or the installation was optimised. It’s because as a council, they had a really strong belief in culture change – it wasn’t a fluffy, soft, nice to do. They saw it as the kinda key underpinning work stream. That would be the driver to get all the stakeholders, especially those 450 social care workforce using trusting, loving technology. And of course, therefore recommending it. So hopefully that’s helpful. You’re going to have two examples now of councils out there doing this stuff. So I’m going to hand over to Georgina Walton, who is a senior project manager and innovation delivery team at Kent Council.

Gina Walton (00:30:33):
Morning, all it’s lovely to see you all. So as Irene said, I’m Gina Walton, I’m a senior project manager within the innovation delivery team, which is hosted within Kent adult social care. And I’m gonna spend the next 15 minutes talking about our journey, and I’ve got a picture of a road there because we are still on a journey. And I feel like we are still in that car moving along. So I’m just gonna talk about where it all started, our learning and some key points that I hope you can take away and consider to help you on your digital culture journey. Next slide please.

Gina Walton (00:31:10):
So where it all began. So two years ago we had Covid really kicking off. But at the same time we had within our adult social care a complete change in our senior management team. So a huge amount of change happened very, very quickly. And with that came a new vision for our adult social care which was making a difference every day. So that was the, the new vision and the direction of travel. Within that there was a focus on three key pillars, so practice, and that’s about how we embed a strength-based practice, innovation and how we embrace change as part of our everyday work and then meaningful measures. So how we effectively use data to inform our decision making. Underpinning this is digital and digital is part of everything that we do. So that was our new vision and direction of travel.

Gina Walton (00:32:12):
And on that, we started to develop our new adult social care strategy. But what became very clear was that we also needed to set out what our vision was for technology. So we developed our digital roadmap. And at the time when developing that we were trying to do a lot of everything in regards to technology. We were very ambitious. We were looking at our digital front door, how we support the care sector to progress on this digital maturity. So there was lots of activity going on and what we realised we needed to do was take a step back and identify key areas that we needed to really tackle, and then from that, build our digital roadmap. So we identified four key areas being our priority for the next year, which is the digital front door and making sure that we get that absolutely right.

Gina Walton (00:33:08):
So improving information, advice, and guidance and improving that journey all the way through to self-serve tools focusing on our technology-enabled care, our social care system, and then how we utilise data and developing the data strategy. So that really helped us be clear on what we wanted to achieve over the next year in regards to digital, and how we then wanted to develop our digital culture. In addition to this, we also, as part of the Covid response introduced Cara, the video carephone, which we’re still continuing to utilise. However, what I’m gonna talk about this morning is much broader than the video carephone. This is about the work that we’re doing in regards to technology-enabled care. And how we’re really trying to embed a digital culture across our adult social care workforce. However, the learning from implementing the video carephone has been crucial in helping us understand in kind of what we need to, to do, to address some of the challenges. So that was our starting point. So what did we do to start to address the culture so that we can get to a place where digital is part of everything we do? So next slide please.

Gina Walton (00:34:33):
So the starting point was the leadership and being brave and ambitious. However, what we didn’t want with the, the leadership, although our leaders are very ambitious, they want to be best in class. They set the direction of travel and really set out what the vision is for adult social care. So we’re all clear on what we are all here to do, which ultimately is make a difference every day for the people that we support have what we didn’t want was a traditional top down approach. So our leaders were very much onboard, but we really had to do a lot of work with our middle management, because they’re the ones that are working with the operational teams and they’re the ones that make it happen. So we had to work together with the leaders, but also all management levels to ensure that everyone was clear on what we were trying to achieve and that everyone was clear on what their role was, and also working with our cabinet members so that it was a shared vision in regards to digital, I’ve talked about how we set our adult social care vision, which is making a difference every day, but we felt we needed to go one step further.

Gina Walton (00:35:45):
So when we started to think more about our technology enabled care approach and what we wanted to achieve, we really wanted to be clear what we meant by technology enabled care. So we set about developing a technology enabled care strategy, and we co-developed this with our workforce and the people that we support. And in developing this, we discussed training and support, skills and behaviours, joint opportunities with health. Charging, and what does charging policy look like? Our existing arrangements, technology and information. So what does the information look like? How, what do we need to develop the range of information that we have available so that people can be very clear about what our offer is, the processes we have in place or need to have in place, and also the governance. And for us, this was a really good starting point cause it helped us be really clear by what we wanted to achieve with technology enabled care, what we meant by this and start to unpick some of the key challenges that we have.

Gina Walton (00:36:56):
We also agreed some key principles for technology enabled care. So our first principle was digital first. The next one was everyone can access technology enabled care. And this was about making sure that we have a really good offer in place, really comprehensive information, advice, and guidance. And following care act assessments where applicable. Looking at how people can utilise direct payments and also considering people with private pay. So this really helped us focus on where we needed to develop our technology enabled care offer so that hopefully people can buy into the approach. Another principle that we agreed was that technology enable care is accessible and easy to use. So that technology is available for all needs and conditions is easy to use. But accepting that technology is not for everybody. So what we started to do with this technology enabled care strategy was clearly set out what technology enabled care is and what it’s not.

Gina Walton (00:37:58):
And then these key principles in terms of what we mean by them and what we don’t mean. So people are really clear. The other principle that we came up with was that technology enabled cares to maximise independence, to support access to the community – formal and informal networks, and technology enabled care will remain sustainable. So that’s thinking about making sure that we have contracts in place that are sustainable and cost effective. So these are the key principles that we came up with and we developed the strategy, another condition that we had to put in place to enable us to progress on our digital culture was understanding our current state and limitations. So this was about us being realistic in terms of where we’re currently at and what we need to do to progress and accepting that we can’t do everything and that we can’t do everything overnight.

Gina Walton (00:38:53):
We are very ambitious. And we were at risk of trying to do far too much in short time scales and therefore started to lose the workforce. So what we realised is that we do have limited experience and knowledge around technology enabled care. We have a very traditional offer at the moment in place. And what we didn’t want to do is just jump straight in and procure a service that we didn’t really understand what we were procuring. So we took a step back and we came up with, I’m not gonna use the word pilot because Clare mentioned this earlier and we’re all risk of doing lots of pilots and it’s about how you then sustain those pilots and make them a reality in the longer term. But what we are going to do is a year long building test, and this will really help us define what we want in terms of our ambition for the future.

Gina Walton (00:39:47):
And also think about how we want to use data. So that in a year’s time, when we hopefully go out to procure a new contract, we can be really clear at about what it is in terms of the technologies that we want, how we want to use them. And then also the data strategy that will go alongside that. So that was just about us really understanding our current data limitations and taking smaller steps to help us progress on our digital culture. The next key element that we put in place was developing the right structure. So this is where we looked at the team that I’m in, which was the project and portfolio office and looked at how we aligned with the current division of adult social care and realised that we needed to change the way that we work, but also the image that we have.

Gina Walton (00:40:46):
So we have recreated ourselves to become the innovation delivery team, working in a more agile way. So as a team, we’ve had training in person-centered approaches, making sure that we work with people and how we effectively work with people and apply that into service redesign, agile training. And we’ve developed an innovation framework, which sets out the conditions to allow innovation to happen at a local level. So how we empower our practitioners to innovate, and we’ve developed a toolkit to enable our practitioners to innovate locally and to test the impact of their local innovations. And for us, this was really key about setting the right conditions for the organisation to be innovative and allow continuous improvement to happen. And then another key condition that we have, I’ve just mentioned it in terms of working with people is that the people we support absolutely need to be working with us to help us not only design the concepts that we’re coming up with in terms of the technology enabled care strategy and what we want to procure, but working with us to inform say the innovation framework and how we measure that.

Gina Walton (00:42:12):
And how do we know that we are making a difference every day? So the people that we support is absolutely key. And in that we also have to think about not only how we work with people to ensure that they are advising and guiding us to get to this right, but also thinking about what support offer we need to put in place for them. So digital inclusion is, is a hot topic. I’m sure many of you are experiencing this within your local authorities. We have a digital exclusion programme in place across the council at the moment. And this is about how we can ensure that we support people to access technologies and use them confidently. And with that, we have introduced a programme of digital ambassadors. So digital ambassadors are people, volunteers who we’ve identified within communities and community groups, who have been trained up to be able to go and work with people, to show them how to use technology and build up their confidence.

Gina Walton (00:43:21):
So they’ve been trained on learning styles and how people retain information and how they work maybe with an older cohort of people. And then what we are doing is matching them up to people within who have been identified by community wardens, social prescribers, our social care teams, who feel that those people would benefit from having some support, somebody who can go in on a one-to-one and show them how to use a tablet, to be able to do some online shopping connected with family and friends. And we’ve found that really has been beneficial and key in helping us start to not only change the culture of our workforce, but also for the people that we support. Next slide, please.

Gina Walton (00:44:12):
So some more points along our journey in making sure that we create the right conditions. So assessing our digital culture and identifying opportunities. So this has been a more recent activity. So to enable our vision of the, making a difference every day and realising the priorities were set out in the digital roadmap, we wanted to ensure that the workforce have the right capability and are able to embrace digital approaches and tools, and that we have the right mindset. So we undertook an exercise into the culture and attitudes towards digital. And we did this through interviews, focus groups, deep dive into the video carephone experience, observations, and insights from when we developed our digital roadmap. And ultimately as I say, we wanted to understand how people use technology and what their attitude was to it, so that we can identify gaps and really focus our digital culture programme on addressing those gaps.

Gina Walton (00:45:20):
So what did we find ? Well, we found that digital solutions are accepted and understood in most parts of the kind of people’s work and that Covid has played a quite key role in in making that so happen in terms of our workforce embracing MS Teams, because that’s the way that they now work effectively. Some have an understanding on the opportunities for digital tools to improve people’s lives, but that was quite inconsistent across the county that we work. And what’s interesting is that our workforce were very confident and competent with using technology in their personal lives. They had smart phones, they were using social media, but that wasn’t being translated to the workplace. And when they, when we talked about how they used technology in the workplace, not only in terms of the technology that they work with to enable them to work effectively, but also how they support people, that confidence wasn’t there.

Gina Walton (00:46:23):
So they were very digital literate when it came to their personal lives, but that wasn’t being translated to the workplace. So our challenge now is about how we start to fill those gaps and recognise that we still on our journey in terms of addressing our digital culture. We have a network of digital champions. This was in place corporately, our corporate team set up digital champions across the council. And they had quite a wide remit and very focused on how they support colleagues to utilise some of the technologies that we have in place as a council. So how they might use MS Teams. But what we found was that those digital champions, particularly those working in adult social care were not being utilised and that there was an opportunity there to evolve that role and get those champions to help embed technology enabled care.

Gina Walton (00:47:20):
So that’s something we are now working with in terms of a digital champion cohort. Developing the right support offer has been key for us. We’ve tested and now implementing technology facilitators. So we started with two. We’re hoping to expand that they are absolutely key in going and working with operational teams. They do horizon scanning into what emerging technologies are coming about, but also advising and providing friendly peer challenge around how practitioners can really utilise technology and think about the everyday solutions that are available. So they, they may recommend how some technologies that people who have already in their home such as smart speakers could be utilised. So they’re, they’re going in and working very closely with the operational teams. And we’ve found some really powerful case studies and really helping us progress our digital culture, because although they are not taking the work away from the practitioners they’re advising and supporting, that’s building the practitioner of confidence and in that working with them to look at the practice and that strength-based practice and how we really shift that mindset in terms of the way that our practitioners work now, I am mindful of, of time.

Gina Walton (00:48:43):
So I’m just going to quickly pick up on the last few points. Communication’s been absolutely key. Building case studies. Positive good news stories, telling the stories, so being really clear to our workforce and people where we are going, what is it we want to achieve? What does that look like? And really trying to set this out visually. So we’ve done quite a few animations, story boards and films to help people understand where we’re trying to get to, but along the way, sharing some of the good news stories so that people can understand what the impact is particularly through those technology facilitators, where they’ve gone out and made a real difference. We’ve captured that and shared it so that people can start to think, oh, yeah, that, that’s a really good idea. How could I apply that within, in my practice and creating the space to share that learning’s been really key for us.

Gina Walton (00:49:33):
So we’ve done that through communities of practice. So bringing people together to share their learning, celebration events and drop in sessions where people can come along and talk about concerns, but also hear about new technologies. Next slide, please. My final one, before I hand over to Stephen. Key learning from this is around being confident. You can do this. We applied a very methodical approach, probably because I’m a project manager by background, but we are very clear in the approach that we wanted to take and how we needed to move on through the stages. However, realising that this is about continuous learning, being realistic on what can be achieved and that we constantly test and refine our approach. Making sure that we’ve got the right foundations in place, we need to win the hearts and minds and build on that.

Gina Walton (00:50:21):
And for us real key learning at the moment is the alignment to our corporate offer around change management and culture, because we are trying to do a lot at the moment within adult social care. We’ve being very ambitious, digital’s not the only area that we’re trying to change, and we’re doing lots of isolated culture and change work. It’s about how we bring that all together and align also with our corporate offer and my final reflection is that we’re still on our journey, lots to learn and, and looking forward to the next stage in this, because I feel like we are kind of at that tipping point. But for us is that Covid has kind of forced us to embrace technologies, for example, the video carephone and that the situation in lockdowns has meant that our practitioners and people have had to utilise these technologies.

Gina Walton (00:51:10):
But what we have seen is that where then restrictions have changed, people have then gone back into old ways of working what they feel comfortable with. So for me, this is the point that I hope we can kind of learn a bit from today, but also part of our ongoing journeys, how do we ensure that we create those right conditions to keep us moving forward and that we sustain what we put in place and that we don’t go back into our old ways of working. I don’t have the answer for that one, but that’s my final reflection. So I’m gonna hand over to Stephen. Now he’s gonna talk about his experience in another authority.

Stephen Boddington (00:51:51):
That’s a fantastic presentation. So my name’s Stephen Boddington. I’m an innovation lead at Norfolk County Council. My working experience is over a decade of working in transformation and culture change in the private and the public sector. And I’ve also got an academic background in cultural studies and I complete a thesis last year on tech acceptance models in adult social care. And some of that I’ll be talking about in this presentation as we go forward. Can we go to the next slide please? Thanks. So Clare talked about this earlier and I am in agreement with her. What is culture, if we want to understand culture change, then it’s probably useful to understand what we mean by culture. And it really is as simple as the ideas, customs and social behaviours of particular groups of peoples or societies. There’s loads of academic work around that in all sorts of different areas, but what does that mean for an organisation?

Stephen Boddington (00:52:40):
What does that mean for you and me and the types of organisations that we work in? So if we can jump onto the next slide, please, I’ll talk about that in a little bit more detail. So apologies for the fact the organisation spelled in the American not with a, with a Zed rather than an S, but what this iceberg shows us is how organisational cultures exist at the top. We’ll see some of the stuff that Georgina just talked about in her presentation, developing of a strategy and a vision and shared values and procedures and goals and the structures of teams and how that changes and alters organisations. And that’s the real visible pit. And you do need to get this right, but my presentation is mostly gonna talk about this stuff that goes on underneath the iceberg, in the invisible bit, the way we as teams and organisations, we talk to each other, the people in it have different shared assumptions about what they’re doing, beliefs about why they want to work in this area, what they want to do, traditional ways of working. They don’t like to change them, their perceptions of what might be going on and the stories that we tell each other and the various feelings that we have about working in the areas that we work in. So if we can jump onto the next slide, please.

Stephen Boddington (00:53:52):
So the thing to remember about that, we’re seeing that big iceberg, it looks like an organisational culture is a giant monolith, but it’s not. Any organisation is made up of many different subcultures, different teams, all behave in different ways, partly to do with the types of work that they do and partly to do with the culture of the individuals who make it up – their gender, their age, their digital skills, their backgrounds, professional views, all the sorts of stuff inform into that and make them all very different. So you might do a piece of culture change or transformational work in an area, and it works successfully with the one team you to apply the same approach in another area of that same thing, but it’s a different set of team, different set of people with a slightly different culture. And you need to adjust your approaches on each of the different ways that you do it.

Stephen Boddington (00:54:40):
And the other point that I wanna make off the back of this slide really is that hierarchical position also can affect the organisational culture. So when I’ve been looking through Norfolk County Council, our workplace surveys, looking at the sort of feedback that we get from our staff about what their sense of pride is. So for frontline adult social care practitioners, they report a real sense of pride about their roles, a real commitment to public services. What are their key intrinsic motivators either get up in the morning, come into work and do what they do and real belief that their work makes a positive difference to the lives of people in Norfolk. And, and I’m sure those of you’ve worked in transformation. Project management, organisational change will be very aware that certainly working in the public sector over the last decade or so, a lot of our change has been driven by budget three pressures.

Stephen Boddington (00:55:28):
So at a top senior level, you have a conversation and very rightly so about creating that balanced budget that we have a statutory duty for. And so what ends up happening is our, certainly from my experiences, our transformational projects end up talking about savings. And yet when you go to engage with a frontline member of staff, their whole intrinsic motivators about why they’re working, what they want to do, is completely different to that around budgetary savings. And that can cause some disconnect and difficulties when trying to move and change the way we work and the culture and what we’re trying to achieve. And it can put barriers in place for us. So El, if you might jump forward two slides for me, please I have put some extra just slides in for, so when people get a chance to read through this, there’s a bit more information for you on that.

Stephen Boddington (00:56:14):
But what I wanna talk about now is this acceptance model that I looked at in my academic studies and how this applies to a case study of some work we did during the Covid pandemic with Rethink and Alcove using video carephones. So as you may well remember in day service provisions, a lot of our buildings based services were shut down for, because we weren’t allowed to come into those type of places. And when, even when they were able to go in, we had a significant proportion of our day service users who were shielding either because they had health issues or the people they lived with did, which meant they weren’t able to access their services. And some people were able to be supported through use of mainstream technology, like doing video calls through Teams or Zoom or FaceTime, whatever. But there was a subset of that group who were digitally excluded, had no to low digital skills, and they had no access to mainstream technology.

Stephen Boddington (00:57:06):
They didn’t have a smartphone, they didn’t have broadband in connection. And what was being seen from our data service providers and reported back also from the wider formal family groups, was that there was some significant impacts on this group of people around social isolation and their general health and wellbeing. So I, when we were looking at the project that I’m talking about now, in relation to the Alcove Video carephones, we really focused on this behavioural intention. What was the point of the project? And the point of this project was to be able to let that group of people who had no to low digital skills, no mainstream technology, and were really suffering under social isolation access to the type of benefits coming to those who could use Zoom, who could use Teams, did have a tablet, did have access to the internet.

Stephen Boddington (00:57:53):
And that’s partly the reason why we chose the Alcove device. And for those of you who don’t know it very quickly, it’s a locked down tablet only does video calls as tiles on the front of it with a picture of the person you want to and their name on it, you touch the tile and it creates a video call straight through to them. The person at the other end doesn’t need to have a device. They can just access it through an app on a smartphone or through a web browser on a PC or a tablet or whatever it might be or a laptop. And it gets really easy. And in fact, we had some people who couldn’t use a telephone. They couldn’t dial somebody else on the telephone because it was beyond their abilities in relation to numeracy, but they were able to use a video carephone to contact their friends and their families and their carers and their wider support network.

Stephen Boddington (00:58:35):
So it was really useful for that. And that’s how we framed this project was around. Here’s an opportunity to support an area of people with some real need, with a piece of technology that will enable them to have a better life. So part of that, making sure you get your behavioural intention, correct. If you start chucking out, it’s about a budgetary saving that changes the whole dynamic of what people are looking at and how they’re thinking about stuff. So there are four key areas that affect how we get that behavioural intention in place that we’re looking to achieve. First of those is performance expectancy. So don’t oversell your products. There’s a tendency, certainly in the digital transformation work that I’ve been doing over the last 4, 5, 6 years is to evangelise about the tech and overemphasise the benefits that you might get from it.

Stephen Boddington (00:59:22):
And that immediately creates a sense of either, well, you’re never gonna achieve that. You’re ridiculous. That’s not gonna happen or disappointment because those benefits just don’t appear. When we were doing this project, we were very much about, we are gonna be able to get a video call going and that’s it. That’s all we were trying to show for them. The second one of these points is effort expectancy. So the key render really is about ease of use. Alcove, as I’ve already said, is a really easy, simple device to use. Social influence is about some of the stuff that Georgina talked about is the way we talk about culture and that invisible part of the culture change of an organisation. How we think about the way we use technology to achieve the outcomes that we get. And some of the resistance that we get from organisations and from people about bringing technology in.

Stephen Boddington (01:00:10):
And then the final bit really of this is the facilitating conditions for a project. For us, this is about making sure that you’ve got the right technology in place. So the Alcove device has a built-in SIM card. So therefore it doesn’t matter whether people have got broadband, they can do some of this stuff themselves. We’ve got the right tech in place, it’s simple to use. And then what we did working with Rethink, which we did a massive amount of engagement work with day centre service providers, talking through the project, talking through with them, what the devices can do, identifying the types of people that they could be able to do it with, and then spending a lot of time, training them and then put a support package around them to be able to access, refer them through to us so we can get the devices set up and then we can get the work going up and running.

Stephen Boddington (01:00:55):
And it’s really successful because we put all of that in place to really make sure the facilitating conditions were right, for them to be able to then get the stuff in place, to be able to deal with that social outcome that we were talking about earlier in relation to the group who were socially isolated and digitally excluded. And if you can jump forward three slides for me, El, and then I’ll start talking about some of the impact that we saw with this. So we, as I said, we saw had a 12 month contract. It was a 12 month project to begin with, looking very much at having a really simple solution to look at people who are digitally excluded and how we can get them the same benefits that those who are not digitally excluded were getting, if we can jump onto the next one quickly, I’m aware of time.

Stephen Boddington (01:01:37):
So I want to zoom through these, but you will be able to read through them when you get the slides sent out. So when we baseline our client group we found that 85% of them were predominantly lonely most or some of the time were missing their friends and family. And there was some significant impact. So our hypothesis was correct. We knew it was gonna make a difference. And if we jump onto the next slide quickly, we’ll see that when we went back to them three months later, we already found that no users were reporting feeling lonely most of the time. And it shifted really to answers hardly ever feeling lonely or potentially some of the time they were. So we saw an almost immediate impact in their improvements. And if we can jump onto the next slide, please, El.

Stephen Boddington (01:02:23):
So we then started to get some case studies together and started communicating the success of this project, which is a key part of building the momentum and the significance of the culture change. We did a lot of stuff. You can see some pictures here of the care worker doing calls with them and doing some baking and various other activities that were done using that to try and support. And one of the biggest benefits that we really spotted with this was that once we got the old devices rolled out, we saw significant increases in carephone calls. So what we saw was once the devices were out, that the individuals who were going to day services were now were phoning their friends. They were phoning from carephone to carephone. Because as I said earlier, if it was to their friends and family, it was through an app or if it was to the care providers, it was also through an app or on their web devices.

Stephen Boddington (01:03:17):
So we know that there was evidence of them actually talking to each other, building their friendship groups, making connections, and doing group work together. It was really profoundly changing for that. And there’s some later slides on here that talk through some of the impacts to residents, service providers and from the providers themselves about the impact it had on the staff. And it El, I know I’m running out of time now. So if you can jump through to the last slide, please, I wanted to quickly talk about, so the one on year two. So part of the feedback that we got from our providers was when they went back into the buildings, there was a real struggle for them to offer a blended offer where they were able to do some work in physically in a building and at the same time to some digital offer.

Stephen Boddington (01:04:00):
So we’ve been thinking about how do we work with day service providers to provide them with a digital virtual online only day service provision. So we have somebody who just does the virtual bit and our day service providers then focus on the buildings base and we can create a blended offer without causing that difficulty and making sure that we continue to get the benefits that we’ve seen from being able to use video technology. And a part of year two of our project is to look at those data service users who are using alcove and saying, can we actually use this as a stepping stone into mainstream digital inclusion? How do we work with them to move them off just a video enabled call into a device so they can do Zoom, they can do Teams, but they can also access the internet.

Stephen Boddington (01:04:45):
They can potentially do online shopping. They can do Facebook, they can do all sorts of other stuff and open up masses of different opportunities for them that they’re currently not able to get, because they don’t have the skills or the access to the technology. And we are working with a wider digital inclusion agenda, including the CCGs and our district councils, to try and drive digital inclusion as a real key issue in Norfolk. And then also we are looking at some of the other stuff we can do now, how we can use video interactions to support some of our other services, including reablement. And that’s a big project for us over the next year, just to try and build that thing that Georgina was talking about is how do you maintain the momentum for the successes we’ve got because of the Covid pandemic? How do we maintain that and drive it forward and continue to build some of the benefits that we’ve seen over the last year or so? Okay. That’s my present, Jason, sorry for the rush on that one, but there we are. We’re roughly back on schedule. <Laugh>

Clare Morris (01:05:43):
Brilliant. Thanks, Stephen. And, and thanks, Gina. As well. Yeah, lots of well earned applauses there. El would you mind taking the slides down and I’ll just move us into the Q and A discussion? So there’s been a lot of conversation in the chat, some of which you’ve picked up Gina already, but I’m actually gonna start at the end <laugh>, which is that sustainability question, which you both beautifully try to duck away from and, and is kind of when we crack that, we can all retire, but I’m just interested. I guess from all three of you, actually, what, what, you know, what do you think might help with this kind of sustainability piece as we kind of move out of intense work focused on, on projects and where are you in that journey? Stephen, should I start with you actually, in terms of because you are at that point at the moment, aren’t you? Yeah,

Stephen Boddington (01:06:41):
It is. And for us, this sustainability of it we’ve, you know, we, I sure it’s the same for most of you. We’ve seen the pandemic has really shifted us as an organisation, into working really more effectively with digital. And it’s how we build that sustainability in the long run and what we’ve realised is you need to throw resource at this. This is the whole thing about communicating with people, talking to people, training them, enthusing them, getting the ideas out, engaging with those frontline staff. And we’ve been doing that. I now have a team of individuals who work under me, me whose basic whole focus of their life is the utilisation and digital technology to enable better outcomes. And so we are working with frontline teams going in, talking to them, understanding their needs, understanding the outcomes that they want to achieve, and then figuring out which piece of tech’s gonna enable them.

Stephen Boddington (01:07:31):
We have a lot of stuff that we already use, but we aren’t using as effectively as we could do. So we look at how we’re gonna do that. And then we develop bespoke training and support packages for those frontline teams to put those bits of change in. It’s slow. It takes time, you can’t shift or move an iceberg. <Laugh> very quickly, it will take years, but the point is to keep moving that momentum. We built up community of practice within the organisation around transformation, which includes innovation and stuff. And we have regular meetups. It’s got about 200 members across the, our organisation of 6,000 now. So we have regular discussions around culture, change, service design, digital technology, the whole picture of it, the really remembering to enable that tech is an enabler of the outcomes we want to achieve. What I don’t wanna see.

Stephen Boddington (01:08:19):
And when, if you think back to the tech acceptance model, was that benefit thing, the tech isn’t the outcome. It’s not the benefit technology, isn’t it? It’s what do we want to do? What’s the thing that the service user wants in their life, what really matters for us and for them and how does the technology enable it? And it’s having those conversations all the time with as many people as you can, and just driving it through the organisation as best as you can, but you can’t do it without resource. And that’s fundamentally what you need to get achieve it for me anyway. So I’ll shut up now.

Clare Morris (01:08:49):
Thanks Stephen. So, I mean, I picked out of that kind of learning framework, communities of practice. You mentioned that as well, Georgia, and there’s something about this. This is, we constantly learning about this aren’t we, it’s not something that does and then stop. So we’ve got learning kind of resources and people, specialist roles. I know you’ve got those as well, Gina and and communications and kind of case studies and content has come up quite a lot. Gina, is there anything you want to kind of add onto?

Gina Walton (01:09:18):
Yeah, so pretty much everything you’ve just said also leadership for us, so that ongoing leadership role in driving this agenda, but also making sure that we look to lots about our practice and the process there to make sure that that is absolutely at that when our practitioners are developing care and support plans with people the mechanisms are in place to enable technology enabled care. As you say, Steven, I think the roles and resources there. So the technology facilitators have been key for us to work alongside our practitioners, to encourage them to explore technology enabled care, but it is about that strength based practice and making sure that the right conversations are happening. So we are developing a practice. I, I didn’t mention this earlier, but a practice framework we’ve really looked at our practice and the way that our practitioners work and make sure that those processes are, are right.

Clare Morris (01:10:17):
Thanks, Gina. That’s really helpful. Irene, is there anything you want to sort of call out from the model that, that is you think is crucial to sustainability?

Irene Carson (01:10:27):
Yeah, I think, and just linking back to, I think Gina covered it as well, but, but Stephen really called it out in his acceptance model and, and that’s about the the language that you’re using. So it’s more than comms it’s about. So I think Stephen, you described it as not starting the conversation as this is going to cost less. That is such a turn off for everybody. And of course an important part of the mix in this, but if you start off the conversation with that and corporate comms teams are often under pressure to deliver messages like that. And so kind of like catching that before that gets too much momentum is probably one of the best things you can do, to just frame this as this is about people living more independent, better wellbeing, happier lives. And I think there’s, and again, just like comms and resources completely agree with both of them, there is so much people power in terms of capacity that you need to do this. It just, you know, it’s not like you switch this on and it happens. You’ve gotta keep sustaining it.

Clare Morris (01:11:43):
Thank you all. And Gina, there’s a nice comment in the chat from Graham Hutton about, is it a digital practitioner’s framework, which is an interesting thing to think about, I think

Gina Walton (01:11:54):
Yeah, but it’s not, it’s actually a practice framework, but within that includes technology, but yeah, that’s an interesting point. Yeah.

Clare Morris (01:12:02):
And Gina, you touched on leadership there and Stephen and Gina, you are both from, you know, you’re from quite big councils, you’ve got big geographical areas. You’ve got large teams. I mean, Kent’s workforce is frankly massive. So I guess there’s two questions wrapped up there. So one is about, about leadership and Gina, obviously you described really well, a shift in leaders, new social care strategy. I’m interested in the kind of how important you think this stuff is that it points to that bigger picture and also kind of what is the challenge actually of engaging the leaders themselves in taking this digital stuff seriously and what, you know, what do they need? And then secondly, just that challenge of kind of scale, we talked about scaling up, but just big spaces, big councils, lots of people. Gina, do you wanna start on that one? Yeah. So

Gina Walton (01:12:54):
Yeah, it is challenge. So in terms of our leads, I think to be honest, it did help that our corporate director is very ambitious and has come from other authorities where he’s seen some of this happen. He has had that experience. So I think that kind of his, his vision for technology and his experience has really helped us. And, and he’s then helped the other leaders get on board with that, by sharing that experience and sharing the impact that he’s seen in other authorities. So sharing the caseload what’s happened, what the benefits and that’s some work we’ve then had to do with those leaders. So we’ve had many sessions where we’ve brought those leaders together, where we’ve talked about, what is digital, what does it mean? What’s our vision here? What’s the end game? What will good look like? So we know we have achieved this vision when we’ve got this, this and this in place, but what is it that needs to be in place? We’ve done a lot of work and a lots of work workshops and discussions, and

Clare Morris (01:14:01):
I’ve lost Gina. Is it just me? <Laugh>

Gina Walton (01:14:06):
No, she’s frozen on me as well. Okay. You are back now. <Laugh> so we’ve had to do quite a lot of work with the the leaders to build that digital roadmap that I talked about earlier. And, and kind of, what does it mean to them. From there, we then had to take it down a level where we then went to that kind of middle layer because they’re the ones that then make it happen in reality. So you’ve got your lead leaders and you’ve got the vision and they’re setting that direction, but then the middle management are the ones that are out there working with the operational teams that are making the day to day decisions and making it happen. So what we then did is a lot of kind of the, the same type of activity we did with the leaders, but with the middle management and working through what does digital mean for them and looking at what tools they need to understand their current digital culture within their teams and assess where they’re at. Because we are such a big county, we can’t do one activity in one area and assume that’s gonna be the same. So it is about how do we develop those tools for those managers to use within their teams and understand the current state. And then once they understand that what’s in place to enable them to fill those gaps, so kind of developing that kind of toolbox to help them.

Clare Morris (01:15:19):
So, in a way, Gina, there’s kind of many culture change programmes for some of those key isn’t there. And I know for the leaders, it’s, it’s been partly creating safety, actually for them to admit that they might not know everything they need to know about this thing and helping them go on that journey themselves. Because you know, these are quite senior powerful people. It’s quite a lot for them to sort of be able to admit, I don’t really know what I’m talking about at this thing.

Gina Walton (01:15:46):
Yeah. I remember when we had the first session with them and I put the question, what does digital mean? I have to say it was, it was a, and at one point I felt like crying because I thought, how am I gonna get this session moving along? Because I’m not getting any response here, but we got through it. And, and by just having that painful time, we’ve got to a point where we have got a shared vision. The other good thing about our leaders as well is that they’re really, we’ve had to do quite not alongside digital culture – empowerment. So work around, what does empowerment look like and how do we create an empowered workforce so that our workforce is empowered to go off and be innovative and try out new ideas without fear of failure. And if clearly we don’t wanna make mistakes that are kind of life and death, but we want them to feel empowered, to be able to go out and be creative and test.

Clare Morris (01:16:38):
Yeah. So hard for leaders to set a direction and vision for something that they’re not expert at. And I think that, sorry, that, that what you’re talking about different teams, because you’ve got in-house provider services as well as ops and commissioning all that sort of staff. So a really adaptive local approach is kind of what you’ve been pursuing. Isn’t it, Stephen?

Stephen Boddington (01:17:00):
Yeah, thanks. As part of my job, I also worked on the organisations, overarching digital strategy roadmap for the 2020s. So working closely with our head of IMT, we did a huge amount of engagement work with the organisation and our surrounding partners. So we talked to the NHS, we talked to the police, we talked to district councils. We talked to the voluntary sector, social enterprises and wherever in Norfolk to really understand where people wanted to go with digital, it was to try and start that conversation. And that work began probably about four years, three, four years ago. We worked on an awful lot of stuff, understanding where each of our departments wanted to go. They were all in slightly different places. But the point was that there was a massive conversation going on about digital and how we can use it to enable the outcomes and services that we want.

Stephen Boddington (01:17:48):
And that was the key message we banged on about since day one is tech is an enabler, it is not an outcome. It’s not the thing that should drive your change. You think you need to think about what it is you want to do, where do you want to get to, and then figure out which piece of tech’s gonna help you get there. And then of course within that, when I’m talking about earlier about different cultures, you look at adult social care where I’m predominantly working now. I’ve also been doing some stuff with our children’s services department to do a digital strategy specifically for them. So we can align across the whole age group from the very first time where as an organisation might touch somebody’s life right through, as they move out of children’s services and into adult social care support, we can maintain a really good digital offer the whole way through.

Stephen Boddington (01:18:30):
We’re starting to think about how we do that. But adult social care had a very ambitious leader the same as in Gina’s case that really wanted to drive towards this. And they gave themselves permission and Sarah on this call actually is one of the key drivers within our organisation for this is that the participants have time to talk, talk to each other about it. We have a steering group in adults that talks about technology examine stuff. We bring people in, we look at the different types of technology and they’ve done that over time to really start to grasp and understand it. And which ties into, I think some of the stuff you said Irene about that knowledge development, about products, approaches and that sort of stuff. And having the time to allow yourself the permission to investigate and look at things and then go, actually, that doesn’t work for us, that doesn’t work here or it might work in this area, but not there and those type of conversations and that, but that does need to be driven from the top.

Stephen Boddington (01:19:21):
You do need to have the right strategies in place. We’ve got an overarching digital strategy for the whole organisation, but then because I’m doing all of the ones for the departments as well, we are making sure that they’re all linking into that overarching position so that we’ve got a roadmap over the next 10 years. So we’re building in as well. What Gina talked about is that horizon scanning element of what’s coming through viewing it and, and managing it and understanding where it might potentially offer us benefit. Do we wanna pilot it at a early, early stage or do we wanna sit and see somebody, what somebody else does with it and does it work for us and having those type of conversations all the time and is where we drive it. So that’s where the leadership comes from for us.

Clare Morris (01:20:00):
Brilliant. Thank you. Irene – do you want to just chip in quickly, I want to get a couple more questions in.

Irene Carson (01:20:07):
I think just one last thing to add that is I think we’re starting to use this little term of digital culture change starts at home, and everybody has such deeply held beliefs about what digital is. So people have this personal digital skills attitudes versus their personal bit versus professional and that’s every single layer of the organisation. And I just think those deeply held beliefs are so kind of hidden. And it’s like the iceberg diagram that was used earlier on, I think the sort of trying to unpick for everybody in your organisation, sort of where those barriers are is just the eternal thing. And I think we put in the chat – I can see that somebody has resonated with it, there’s the what’s happening in your governance and what you perhaps need to change in your governance and whilst you’re doing that, what are the conversations that you need to have outside, because it might really surprise you what the beliefs are and how they might be hampering things.

Clare Morris (01:21:16):
Brilliant. Thank you. So there’s been some in the chat, which I know you’ve responded to Gina, questions about co-production, engagement with communities, people, families, and also Stephen, you just talked quite a lot there about engagement with partners as well. Do you just want to, Gina, could you just give us a flavour of, and you talked about empower as well, and I think it links, but to the to sort of digital inclusion more widely, and I know you’ve both kind of connected to that, but often that work isn’t led from social care. So it’s something you kind of want to shape and connect to. And the kind of enfranchising people’s existing tech in their lives. So co-production, digital inclusion and existing tech, Gina, do you want to go…

Gina Walton (01:22:06):
Co-production first. We created Your Voice Network in adult social care. I’m happy to share all the material that we developed as part of that. So Your Voice Network is about how we engage with people that are supported by adult social care. We work with them in different ways in terms of sharing information and then asking for feedback all the way through to co-design and bringing people in to actually work with us on, on developing and designing new services solutions, and then also getting people to test them. And that’s been really effective. But within that, we had to think about how do we reward people or kind of financially for their time. So we to unpick some of those elements, but it’s been really a effective network that’s constantly growing number of people that work with us and inform our thinking in terms of then digital inclusion.

Gina Walton (01:23:00):
So you’re right. We have a Kent County Council, digital inclusion programme. We are working very closely with that programme, but in adult social care, we recognised a gap before that programme was developed in that we needed to support people in communities to access technologies and build their confidence. So we have a project, which is a European funded project, which has allowed us to test digital ambassadors. These are people that are volunteers. We commissioned a training programme that they access a very programme, that they then build up themselves skills to then go out and work with people and communities to train them up on how to use technology confidently and competently, and thinking about different learning style techniques and how people retain information. So we’ve created this network of digital ambassadors, but what we’ve found with the digital inclusion programme and other sectors.

Gina Walton (01:23:59):
So we found that voluntary sectors also identify this as gap is that we find in digital ambassadors are popping up everywhere now across. So what we are developing is an overarching, this is what we know is happening across the county. We know where the digital ambassadors are working so that when they’re, when people have been identified, we can match them up with a local resource. But within that, we equip those digital ambassadors with a tech box. So they have a little tech box of different solutions, such as the video carephone, bit of everyday solutions as well that people may have in their home. And they go out and Covid has restricted it slightly. But they go out into communities, go to community halls and do coffee and chat and show people some of the tech solutions that are available and then also help build up their confidence by doing some demos on iPads, and what have you – smart devices. And then if people need, they can have one-to-one sessions where they’ll go and work with them for a period of time to build them up.

Clare Morris (01:24:58):
Brilliant. Thanks, Gina. And you did make sense of my sweeping across those things are connected, aren’t they? I think Stephen, anything to add from Norfolk?

Stephen Boddington (01:25:08):
Yeah, just I mean, a lot of our work we’ve doing we’ve started to do some really significant stuff with our CCG colleagues. We, at the beginning of the pandemic, we were looking at some specific piece of work to support care homes. They wanted to drive, Attend Anywhere through, into care homes so that they could do virtual consultations in residential care homes. And we were looking at doing that and then boom, the pandemic hit. And we were like, well, we’ll just carry on having a chat anyway. And over time we built up some really good relationships with people who working in the same space as us in different areas. And that’s just because we’ve made the effort to have a regular catch up and build those networks. In the end, to get the system to work properly, you need to build relationships across it and have trust in each other and understand what each other are doing and find those moments where what they need to achieve for their organisation aligns with what we want to achieve for our organisation and where you can support each other to get the best results.

Stephen Boddington (01:26:04):
And so we’ve started some conversations around some various bits of technology that might be really useful for care homes and how we can support each other to drive that through for around electronic care records. Because at the moment, if, you know, if you want an integrated care records, the NHS can do it, we can do it, we can integrate our data. But half of that, you know, over half of our care providers are still using bits of paper and I’m not quite sure how you integrate that into a digital system. Well, you can’t. So we need to get them onto some sort of electronic care records system and how do we drive that forward? And the only way we’re gonna do that is working in conjunction with each other and with the care providers to overcome the barriers that we know that they’ve got.

Stephen Boddington (01:26:42):
And we know that have got barriers because we’ve talked to them. They have a care association and subgroups and meetings that we attend on regular basis and continue that sort of dialogue and conversation. It’s the only way to do it. It involves time and effort and turning up and listening to people and then showing them that you’ve actually listened to what it is that their issues are and then try and work to figure stuff out. So at the end of my conversation, I talked about the virtual online day service provision. That idea came from our day service providers. And we are now trying to get that in place because they saw that as the solution to the problem that they had. And we can enable that for them and get better outcomes for everyone. And that’s a key part of working together.

Clare Morris (01:27:25):
Thanks, Gina, did you want to just come back in quickly? Yeah,

Gina Walton (01:27:28):
Very quickly. I was responding to things in the chat, but years ago when we were developing our digital strategy, which we no longer have, but it was years and years ago, we went into a room with people to help co-produce that strategy. And in that session there was people sharing their experiences about the different apps and things they were using and how between their own groups, peer groups, they were recommending them to each other because what they fed back to us is that they’re doing that because the practitioners didn’t suggest those solutions. So they’ve gone off and done it themselves and they used their own networks to share that information. So we kind of thought, ah, there’s a gap and a trick here that we need to listen to these people because they can actually help us understand when I talk about that horizon scanning, what’s working with people, let’s take that learning and then share it with others. So I just wanted to share that about how we then also learning from people and communities around what’s working for them so that we can then share that with others.

Clare Morris (01:28:22):
Really helpful and just kind of a really source of key source for influence for culture change and moving practitioner thinking are really helpful. I’m just gonna pick up a couple more points quickly. And you’ve all seen the chat. We will try and capture the content chat. There’s some rich side conversations going on around running focus groups, digital culture, all sorts of stuff. So it’s brilliant. Irene, do you just want to just quickly say something about ethics because with ethics has now come up as a topic, which is probably a masterclass in itself.

Irene Carson (01:28:53):
Yeah, and I saw that question and I wonder if it’s like sort of what end of ethics is that. So I completely agree with what Clare is saying. I can see that Ed from the LGA has also provided a link in there to some national stuff. And there’s a sort of, I guess it’s looking like the macro and the micro ethics in this as well. So kinda like the big picture stuff -how we use information, all that kinda stuff. And then there is the consent and choice for people who are actually at the receiving end of the technology. And I would go back to that the culture change model and that balanced risk analysis bit of it. And also about the communication, how do you frame that conversation? Because ultimately what is unethical is people losing independence because of the barriers and decisions not being made to enable people to use the best technology to live better life. So I guess that would be my word of warning or how you steer that conversation because quite often the ethics conversation and the consent conversation can just scare people off. And then that kind of like the, like an risk avoidance kicks in.

Clare Morris (01:30:04):
Yeah. So as with all of this, ethics can be thrown up as a barrier or an enabling ethical framework could hugely liberate use of technology and at Rethink, we, we feel increasingly passionate that access to technology is a right for people, not just a nice to have or something we might think about, they’re entitled to it. We all have it and it should be in their lives, but I’ll get off that particular soapbox. Now, thank you all so much. Stephen and Gina, there’s been some requests for you to share some documents, some case studies, some collateral in the chat, I’ll leave you to respond to that. Obviously the LGA have the Khub and LGA colleagues can facilitate sharing things that people would like to. Georgia I failed, but feel free to wrap up <laugh>

Georgia Goddard (01:30:52):
Thanks, Clare. No worries at all. It’s always, it’s always the little organisational bits that can be run through really fast, as I said. Thanks if we can get the, the slides up from the Q and A onwards, that would be great. So yes, as the culture change tool that Irene presented today, as well as an accessible recording and the slide deck will be available on our CHIP Digital Resource Centre. I will also send it round by emails to everyone who’s signed up. And also those few people who emailed saying they hadn’t necessarily worked out the signup process, the CHIP Digital Resource Centre, for those of you who haven’t heard about this site yet, it’s the home of all of our tools, blogs, the podcast we mentioned earlier and all of the resources that are emerging from this programme of work and it is continually updated.

Georgia Goddard (01:31:46):
So please do explore, even if you have visited it before next slide, please, El. It’s also on this CHIP Digital Resource Centre that you can see all the other events in our masterclass series in the events tab. We’ll be covering digital discharge in February, digital access for all, and working with the care market for the rest of the series. If you are having issues signing up and you are not getting the registration details, please do email us. We’re going to show some contact details at the end. I think it’s always worth checking your junk email as well. Just to say on that – next slide, please El. The most important thing for us of course, is it would be really useful to hear how you found this masterclass. My colleague El is going to post two polls in the chat just now. We’d really appreciate you filling these out. We understand not all of you have time to fill out the slightly longer evaluation form. So El, if you could post them now, that would be great. This is an anonymous poll and, you know, not recording name and the results aren’t shared. So please do be as honest as you can be, that would be very much appreciated.

Georgia Goddard (01:33:08):
If you would like to fill out the longer evaluation form, it would be much appreciated. I say longer it’s only five minutes and it would really help us improve future master classes. So I’ll be sending that round via email. I think Jemma also posted the link in the chat a bit earlier. It’d be useful if you could post that again, please, Jemma. I can’t stress enough how useful it is when we have that kind of more detailed feedback. Third on this slide is the DTASC network. This is a closed group for local government colleagues, where you can share about all things digital. I know some people have been requesting case studies for example today. Hopefully I can work with Gina to put those case studies on the KHub on the DTASC network. So please do join that if you haven’t already, it’s a really useful resource, and I’ll also share the slides and all of the information from today on that KHub for those of you who haven’t or who maybe won’t get it other ways.

Georgia Goddard (01:34:13):
And finally, before we close I’d like to say a big thank you to Rethink Partners for organising this masterclass and especially Irene for present the amazing tool you’ve produced. I’m sure everyone will find it incredibly useful, lots of clapping coming through. Thank you El for taking us through the slides sometimes at a record break neck speed very much appreciated. And the biggest thank you of all goes to our amazing guests, Gina and Stephen. We’re so grateful to you, both for giving up your time and sharing your expertise today. I think everyone’s found it incredibly useful and lots of nice comments in the chat as well. And thank you to all of you for attending. We really hope to see you at the next one in February on digital discharge. But other than that all this stuff to say is have a nice day. And I’ll leave our contact details up on the page. If you have any further questions on the back of this masterclass, thank you everyone


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