Child Welfare Quality Improvement Center for Workforce Development (QIC-WD)


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The Implementation Team The Quality Improvement Center for Workforce Development (QIC-WD) worked with EBCI Family Safety Program (FSP) to establish an implementation team to lead the development and implementation of their intervention. The implementation team included the FSP Manager, the individual unit supervisors, and the Site Implementation Manager (SIM)/Data Coordinator (the same person fulfilled the role of SIM and Data Coordinator), leadership from throughout the Public Health and Human Services Division, and three members of the QIC-WD (representing expertise in workforce, implementation, and evaluation). The SIM and Data Coordinator positions were partially funded by the QICWD and all other representatives participated as part of the orientation of their positions toward continuous quality improvement and supporting development of a highly skilled, community facing workforce. The implementation team met with other individuals as needed throughout the course of the project, such as representatives from human resources, FSP social workers, and cultural experts within the community. The implementation team met approximately every six weeks, face-to-face for a full 1-2 days in Cherokee, North Carolina for the first two years of the project. The team met as needed in the final years of the project. Meetings were held virtually when the agenda was short or due to the pandemic in 2020 – 2021. Additionally, between implementation team meetings, the QIC-WD representatives met with the SIM/Data Coordinator virtually every 1–2 weeks throughout the project. The implementation team was responsible for: • Serving as project champions • Reviewing and interpreting the needs assessment data • Selecting/developing an intervention • Considering how the intervention would integrate into existing systems and agency structures • Considering if any agency policies or procedures impact the intervention • Planning for implementation • Planning for sustainability • Determining fit of intervention with agency priorities Preparing for Implementation Because the supervisors were heavily involved with the development of the onboarding program, they were prepared to begin implementation of the intervention. Supervisors were consulted throughout development for guidance about the content the intervention manuals. They also reviewed the final version and were very knowledgeable about the roles and actions they were to play in the onboarding, thus, their ownership of the practice was high as the implementation date drew closer. To help inform the rest of the staff, an announcement was made at an all-staff meeting by the FSP Manager when the onboarding program was set to begin. The SIM was available to facilitate implementation and answer questions prior to and during initial implementation. Implementation Supports The support of the Family Safety Program Manager was key to communicating the importance of implementing the onboarding practice as faithfully as possible. The Manager and SIM met with the supervisors regularly to trouble-shoot challenges and ensure the onboarding program was being carried out to fidelity. The Manager also met with the entire program staff once a week, preparing everyone for new staff members and setting the tone for a warm welcome for the new staff. The Manager communicated via face-to-face meetings, videoconferences, and written emails about the importance of collaboration and understanding across the units. The Manager supported communication and collaboration between the FSP supervisors and their colleagues in Human Resources. Two manuals were carefully written for the intervention to describe each element, its purpose, the actions expected, the individuals to be involved, the needed materials and tools if any, and the approximate time involved. One manual was for the supervisors who initiate action for most of the elements, and who follow the progress from beginning to end. The second manual was for the person who was hired, and it is provided on the first day of employment in paper and electronic forms. The different forms acknowledge the fact that adults learn in different ways. Also, if assignment of a computer and instructions on how to access FSP’s local area network was delayed, the new staff person had the paper copy and could proceed as soon as possible. The implementation team was provided with periodic updates about uptake and perceptions of the intervention to inform communications and decision making.