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Explain why it is important to work in ways that are agreed with your employer

This page is designed to answer the following questions:

NOTE: This page has been quality assured for 2021 as per our Quality Assurance policy.

What are agreed ways of working?

Agreed ways of working are the ways in which your employer expects you to work. You will be informed of these by your manager and they should be backed up with relevant documentation in the form of policies, procedures, care plans etc.

Policies are a set of guidelines that set out your organisation’s plans, values and philosophy for handling particular issues. Procedures provide details about to perform a particular task in line with organisational policies. You may also access agreed ways of working from an individual’s care plan or your job description.

Why you must work in the ways agreed by your employer

It is important that you work in line with your employer’s agreed ways of working for several reasons.

First of all your employer may ask you to work in a certain way to ensure your safety and the safety of others. Also, working in adherence to agreed ways of working will ensure that you work within the boundaries of the law. Some agreed ways of working may be in place so that the care and support you provide meets the individual’s needs and preferences or upholds their dignity and human rights.

If you fail to follow agreed ways of working, it could result in harm to yourself or others or damage to property/equipment. It could also lead to working in a way that is unlawful or a service user’s needs not being met.

How to demonstrate that you work in line with agreed ways of working

Some examples of agreed ways of working and ways that you can demonstrate that you work in line with them include:

  • Health & Safety Policy & Procedure: Reporting any concerns you have to your manager
  • Professional Development Policy – Attend all training and be an active participant during supervision and appraisal
  • Infection Control Policy & Procedure – ensure you perform all cleaning tasks as directed and understand why it must be carried out in that way

Accessing your agreed ways of working

For this assessment criteria, you must show that you know how to access your employer’s latest agreed ways of working. You may be asked to demonstrate this by accessing, and explaining the main principles of a particular policy (e.g. the whistleblowing policy) to evidence your competency.

Your employer will provide you with full and up-to-date details of the agreed ways of working that are relevant to your role. Some agreed ways of working may be communicated verbally by your manager but usually, your employer will have documented them in the form of plans, policies and procedures.

Agreed ways of working must be:

  • Full – they provide all relevant information in clear, unambiguous language
  • Up-to-date – they are reviewed and updated regularly to correspond with any changes to legislation, best practice or a service user’s needs/wishes

Some organisations provide staff with an Employee’s Handbook which contains guidance on how you should behave and the policies and procedures that are relevant to you.

Agreed ways of working may be documented in paper or digital format.

If your organisation uses a digital system, you may be given a username and password and be able to access documents whenever you need to. The computer system will ensure that the information is secure and only give you access to the information that is relevant to you – however, you must ensure that you keep your credentials safe and do not share them with others.

You may need to follow a particular procedure to access paper-based agreed ways of working. This can include requesting permission from the appropriate person and reading the document in a private area.

Your employer may request that you sign to say that you have understood the information in each policy/procedure – you should only do this if you fully understand what is required of you because a lack of understanding could risk the safety of yourself or others. If you are unsure, you should always ask your manager for clarification.