17 January 2019
The quality of support experienced by people who use You First is intrinsically linked to the quality of support experienced by the people working for the organisation. It is an undeniable reality that the quality of staff supervision will dictate customer experience. Whilst the people we support are and will always be the people of primary importance enabling and facilitating quality support by valuing and respecting those at the point of delivery is critical. This is an inescapable reality and one that organisations overlook at their peril. As a provider of social care our infrastructure is people; people are supported through people! Therefore, in order to ensure that support delivered is the very best employee experience must be equally as positive.
You First is a provider of community-based support with our focus upon supporting people to establish, build and maintain rewarding community connections of mutual value so our team of workers provide support in the community on a one-to-one basis. The very nature of this creates a natural distance between staff and the organisation and the potential for disconnect is therefore high. It’s a risk that we are very aware of and therefore we take proactive steps to build connections and relationships of trust with the people who work with You First just as we do with the people who access You First for support.
All support staff have regular supervision and this is a supportive and developmental process and is provided in the format of a structured conversation where both parties listen and engage in an atmosphere of mutual respect. For a non building-based but community asset rich provider quality supervision is pivotal to ensuring that support provided reflects You First values as it works to build and maintain a genuine sense of value and belonging.
All staff receive a very brief weekly survey that asks them to comment on their You First experience that week and to score the Social Enterprise out of 10. This enables operational managers to have a clear sense of how staff are feeling at any one time and to understand what influences those feelings which in turn enables the organisation to make swift changes that support positive employee experience and the best outcomes for our customers.
You First essentially provides a range of micro provisions under one CQC regulated umbrella. Each customer has their own dedicated team of staff and all staff have access to an online platform that aids and facilitates real time communication between team members and their managers. It’s an encrypted work-related chatroom the outcomes of which are team cohesion, consistency of practice, effective communication and positive team identity through the building of positive and professional peer relationships.
Financial, physical and emotional wellbeing are fundamental to quality of life. At You First we recognise that these three factors impact upon work performance and therefore influence quality of experience for our customers and we invest in an Employee Assistance Programme that entitles staff members and their familiy to free and confidential counselling and support 24 hours a day.
Staff engagement and participation is central to You First’s philosophy and the Staff Board, made up of 8 staff members from across the organisation, is a key tool to facilitating this. The Staff Board brings the staff voice right into the heart of the Social Enterprise and enables all team members to influence You First direction through having a clear voice that is heard.
As a Third Sector organisation we have a Theory of Change that all staff sign up to at the point of induction. We are committed to “growing our own” senior staff as we want people working with us who have signed up to the You First Way. Through training and support we facilitate professional growth and development and it’s a pleasure to see people flourish and take up senior positions within the organisation.
This article may have inspired you to look into joining the You First team. If so please visit this link that will take you to our recruitment page where you can complete our on line application form. We look forward to hearing from you!