Building your project team
A team made up of different roles, skills and views will be essential to effectively to deliver change. Key roles in a project team should include:
- a lead to co-ordinate the project and facilitate the team
- service leads (clinical and non-clinical) who have the authority to change processes
- subject matter experts from across the pathway who understand appointment booking processes
- a data analyst to provide support accessing and interpreting data, and
- a quality improvement practitioner to provide improvement support, advice and training.
In addition to your project team, it is also good practice to have a sponsor to provide support from a senior management level to help overcome challenges you may encounter in the wider organisation.
Working as a project team
The project team should agree how they will work together and maintain effective communication. Some considerations should be:
- can you use time in existing meetings to discuss the project?
- do you always need to meet in person, or can you meet virtually?
- how often will you need to meet?
- would a Microsoft teams channel support more regular communication?
- where are you going to save documents so all team members can access them?
- reviewing guidance to help with team facilitation and running effective meetings from the QI Zone.
It is also important to ensure that expectations are set out. Expectations in relation to:
- deliverables and objectives
- how much time per week/month will be required, and
- how progress will be monitored.
Setting a project aim
Setting a project aim will help keep the project team focused on delivery as well as communicating your desired outcome to stakeholders. When setting the aim you should consider:
- Consider the scope of your improvement project. For example, are you going to focus on one speciality within one hospital? Or one speciality across all hospitals within your health board? Or several specialities that share a common waiting area? If you plan to work across multiple specialties, ensure each speciality is represented in the project team.
- setting a project aim that uses STAN (specific, timebound, aligned to the NHS board’s objectives and numeric). For example, "By end of March 2021 services in clinic space 1 at the Royal Infirmary will have the physical space required to meet outpatient demand."
- it is okay for there to be some level of uncertainty around the aim statement at this point. This is not set in stone and can be refined and updated as the project progresses.
An action plan is a robust plan detailing all the actions required to achieve project goals. It includes necessary tasks, prioritises them, details who is responsible for leading these at the project level and describes progress. This action tracker template can help teams track and managing actions.
A project charter is the statement of scope, objectives and people who are participating in a project and supports the team to document what they want to achieve, why it is important and how they will measure success. A project charter will help maintain a sense of purpose, aid leaders to see the value of the project and provide clarity on roles and responsibilities as the project is delivered.