Category Archives: Streamlining TaF

Who are our change-makers?

Are you sitting comfortably? Well I will begin……

Once upon a time a company needed to change and offer an improved service to its users. The senior leadership team (SLT) called the managers into a series of meetings and a plan was drawn up and agreed. The senior leadership team sat back and waited for the change to happen. Every month they monitored what was going on but nothing had changed. The SLT called the managers back into another series of meetings and again the plan was agreed. The SLT waited and still no changes took place.

The SLT tried a different approach. It decided to look at the informal networks that were operating across the company and used the free open source software Gephi to create a visualization of the networks; to see who the key people were. To their surprise one of the key people at the centre of the network was the man from the post-room. He visited every office twice a day with the post. They dug a little deeper and saw that although they had engaged with the managers in their company, they hadn’t engaged with the other key influencers in their company; people like the man from the post-room. The key influencers were surprised to be called to a meeting to discuss the proposed changes as they did not recognise that they had a role to play and ideas to offer that would improve the service. However, they participated positively and the change that needed to take place, happened.

The same is true of our strategic framework Knowledge for Healthcare. We all have a role to play in suggesting ways that these changes can happen. I work in the South as a knowledge services development lead; David works in the North as a learning resource advisor. We work together on the streamlining task & finish group and he will now describe how he has contributed to change and why that is important for our group.

Library change–maker David

As a learning resource advisor I’ve dealt with document delivery for a long time, I understand the day-to-day workings of document supply and have identified areas that could potentially cause bottlenecks. Over the years, I have been able to make suggestions to my colleagues and managers for ways in which we can streamline the processes and improve the service offered to our users. Sometimes these changes have been instigated by my manager, sometimes by me and sometimes the changes have been due to external factors such as changes in copyright law or the introduction of the CLA Licence Plus.

Since I joined the Streamlining Task & Finish group my knowledge of how other libraries approach document supply has increased and my understanding of copyright has also increased with our ‘copyright first responder’ training. This has been invaluable for me and for the library team. But my first-hand knowledge of document supply has also informed the decisions and recommendations the streamlining group has made; helping guide the group understanding of the library assistant’s role and highlighting areas of change which may help in this role. One of which was easier access to copyright advice and information.

As a result of this ‘three-way conversation’ between the task& finish group, myself and my manager some major improvements have been made to the service we offer our users in the area of document supply.

The challenge to us all is to become “change –makers” and work together to influence and deliver Knowledge for healthcare in our library and knowledge services. Oh and as you ask, the story above is a true one.

Sue Robertson
Knowledge Services Development Lead, South
Health Education England
4150 Chancellor Court | Oxford Business Park South | Oxford | OX4 2GX
T. 07557 256204
E. sue.robertson@hee.nhs.uk
W. www.hee.nhs.uk

David Watson
Learning Resources Advisor
Rodney Cove-Smith Library
South Tees Institute of Learning, Research and Innovation
South Tees NHS Foundation Trust
The James Cook University Hospital
Marton Road
Middlesbrough
TS4 3BW
Tel: 01642 854820

CAS and Streamlining Reports now available

Reports from the Current Awareness Services Task & Finish Group, and the Streamlining Document Delivery Task & Finish Group, are both now available. These summarise the groups’ findings and make recommendations for 2016-17.

Both groups are very grateful to the NHS library staff from across England who contributed information to help build a big picture overview of current activity in these two areas. I’m delighted that both groups are keen to continue to work this year, and that both have gained additional members, so that every LETB library network is represented.

Do have a look at the reports. Reflections and suggestions welcome!

Helen Bingham, Chair of Service Transformation Group – helen.bingham@wessex.hee.nhs.uk

 

It may all be NUTS by David Law

As we rapidly approach a nadir on the Streamlining Group’s work at reviewing document delivery and supply we are gaining an integral understanding of what is a complex area. “Scratch the surface” or “opening a can of worms” are two phrases that have come to mind during the past few months, but recommendations for some key actions there will be. The potential is there to radically transform and streamline the way the NHS shares its knowledge, saves money and ultimately provides an ultra-efficient and equitable service to its end users.

The group is working towards the creation of a national policy on document supply by reviewing the existing regional policies and policies of other collaborative networks such as NULJ, PLCS and FIL (Forum for Interlending). There is a great deal of similarity amongst them, however we also need to be aware of where local practice may be “best practice” and incorporate this into our standards.

The contentious area of charging was raised in the previous blog posting from the group and elicited a number of comments. This is a difficult area to assess due to significant local variance and the reasons as to why a charge is in place. Close collaboration with other K4H workstream areas will be required to find a solution acceptable to everyone.

Nine years ago a business case was written, “NHS Interlending & Document Supply Services: Strategic Business Case”, but was never adopted as an action or a viable solution at the time. Many of the issues highlighted remain the same today and although we are not developing a new business case the group has taken on some of the recommendations from that document. A key part of the group’s work has been to scope out the practical and technical requirements of a document supply/interlending management system and this appears to have morphed into a beast of its own and there is hope that at a future date this may underpin document supply work within the NHS.

This work though is very much step-by-step and the group intends to deliver robust recommendations regarding document supply. As a first step the creation of a national union list of journals is core as this will make visible and increase accessibility to the journal resources owned by the NHS. Fundamental is the understanding that if a resource is purchased by the NHS, then it should be shared across NHS boundaries. This should reduce reliance upon external providers, often at cost, and will also in time allow for the creation of a national collection policy. At present we don’t know what we have!

What will be the impact upon regional schemes? Initially there should be minimal impact and the national union list will supplement membership of these schemes, however with the possible development of a national management system change will probably be required. Some regional schemes are already being transformed, amalgamated or have developed shared protocols. ULSERS will be no more soon and who knows what a new scheme may have as an acronym. It’s all NUTS to me anyhow….

Any comments please send to sue.robertson@thamesvalley.hee.nhs.uk