Digital working, learning and information sharing

Person writing on a desk in front of a keyboardge Here The social care workforce can use technology to support people to live independently and have meaningful lives.

When we talk about digital working we mean working with computer systems, tablets, phones etc.

There are many benefits of working digitally, for example, staff can gain quicker access to information and find new and engaging ways to stay in touch with those who need care and support.

Digital capabilities of the adult social care workforce

In 2014 we asked the adult social care workforce how they used technology and how confident they were with it. An infographic shows the results of this work in an easy to read format and a short bulletin shares more detail.  You can read the full report by visiting our Research Knowledge Base.

You can read more about our work using the sections below.

This strategy sets out how we can all implement digital working, learning and information sharing. The most important aspect is that digital technologies are used in the best interests of people needing care and support and at all times to support their choice and independence. The strategy ensures we are:

  • giving everyone involved in delivering care and support the confidence and competence to work digitally
  • giving the workforce an opportunity to develop their digital skills
  • ensuring that digital learning is recognised as a crucial part of workforce development
  • ensuring that learning in this area is blended and includes achieving standards and qualifications
  • recognising that people may need help to engage with digital technology.
The strategy - three years on

Our three years on document takes a look at what work we have undertaken since the strategy was first launched 3 years ago, as well as dialogue and feedback from recent Digital Leaders event.

Download the three years on document.

We’ll be providing examples of how technology is being used to enable workers, employers, people with care and support needs and carers to work and learn differently.

We’ll also look at how digital working has made an impact on those who need care and support.

  • The current capability of the workforce to work and learn digitally has been reviewed with any skills gaps and key issues identified. Download  the findings.
  • We’ll be producing a guide to commissioning and providing workforce development for digital learning, working and information sharing.
  • A workforce development support resource for digital working, learning and information sharing will be developed from the guide. The resource will aim to address how digital working and learning can support integrated workforce development and examples of how digital products and services can be co-produced. 

Everyone working in social care and health should see the use and safe sharing of information as part of their responsibility. This is why we produced information sharing for social care employers guide to help social care employers consider these issues and begin to skill their staff to meet these new challenges. We also have a print friendly version.

Films

Three short films have been produced to show how employers have started to meet some of the challenges of information sharing

  1. Lessons in integrated working - the Living well project, Cornwall
  2. New systems for information sharing -  the heathland project, Cumbria
  3. Advice from data sharing experts The Centre for Excellence for Information Sharing and the Information Governance Alliance explain how they can support employers in this area.

We want to support employers in building their digital confidence and competence when using digital technology. Our research showed that employers prefer peer to peer learning rather than standalone courses and that they would like to have someone in their organisation who can provide training and help when staff need it.

In 2015, we joined forces with Digital Unite to run a pilot programme of digital champions.

A Digital Champion is a staff member who has the training, skills and confidence to engage, teach and support colleagues with being digital, not necessarily an IT whizz, but someone who has enthusiasm for modern technology and a willingness to help others. 

Results and feedback from this pilot were positive. Further updates will be posted here as they become available.

Core digital skills are the skills and knowledge needed to undertake every day digital activities relevant to your job role.

We have put together a guide to help you understand why people in social care need core digital skills and to identify what they are. 

Download our guide to core digital skills in social care.

To find out more about the other core skills in social care visit our core skills page.

Uplands Nursing Home in Shrewsbury tells us about how they collect and use information to secure the long term success of their business.

They’ve also helped their staff become more IT savvy and have introduced a range of systems which is helping their staff deliver safer and more efficient care.

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