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Monitor and evaluate efficiency of internal and external communication systems and practises

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As with all areas of service provision, communication systems and practices should be monitored to evaluate their efficiency and identify areas where improvements could be made. This will be part of an organisation-wide auditing process for the continuous improvement of services and operations as required by Regulation 17 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014.

Internal and external communications

Internal communication refers to communication between members of your organisation including team members, managers and the board of directors or owners. External communication refers to communications that are transmitted and received outside of the organisation, such as with service users, their families, other agencies and the general public.

Monitoring communication systems and practices

Communication systems can be monitored in several ways.

You could set up a focus group with a cross-section of individuals that have a vested interest in your organisation’s operations, such as service users and their families. Regular meetings can help to identify areas that could be improved.

Similarly, sending out satisfaction surveys or questionnaires to service users can encourage them to provide feedback.

Existing systems, such as a complaints system and reports created from complaint investigations may reveal areas where communication has broken down or been misinterpreted.

Evaluating communication systems and practices

Having collated information about current communication systems and practices, it will need to be analysed before evaluations can be made about its efficacy.

You may wish to look for common themes in the data that indicate a persistent communication issue that needs to be resolved. You may need to investigate further and look more deeply to uncover communication barriers that may not be immediately obvious. For example, misunderstandings may occur when team members change shifts because they do not have enough time to fill in handover notes leading to rushed writing that is illegible. This could be resolved by ensuring that all team members are provided with ten minutes in a quiet area at the end of their shift to write up their notes.

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