Introducing the BJSS Health & Social Care Community of Practice: What Is It & Why Does It Matter?

    By Tom Mellor, Client Principal, BJSS

    Tom Mellor

    We’re proud to announce the launch of the BJSS Health and Social Care Community of Practice.  

    Its mission is to enhance our collective knowledge in health and social care by sharing our own knowledge and experience in the industry. We’ll also be using the initiative to bring in external experts to provide insight and inspiration.

    Our Community of Practice is open to everyone and anyone within BJSS, with an interest in health and social care.  

    In this blog, we will talk about our aspirations for the Community of Practice, why it’s so important to us, and how it embodies our core values of professional excellence, innovative thinking and collaboration.  

    What is the BJSS Health & Social Care Community of Practice? 

    When we announced our Health & Social Care Community of Practice internally, we wanted to make sure that people knew what a Community of Practice actually was.  

    At BJSS, a Community of Practice is a group of people who share a common concern, a set of problems, or an interest in a topic. The motivation for coming together is both individual and collective.  For individuals, we see the value in enhancing our knowledge and development whilst collectively; we want to improve how we work together to deliver client solutions.

    At the heart of our Community of Practice are our monthly virtual meetings, which are held on different days and times each month to account for different working patterns and other commitments. Each session will balance catching up on the work we’re currently doing across health & social care and a ‘Focus Topic’.  

    Focus Topics include reviews of health and social care work delivered by BJSS, important policies and the latest innovations. Questions and discussions will be encouraged! 

    The BJSS Health & Social Care Community of Practice will bring together the 450+ people currently working on health & social care projects at BJSS. It’s also open to anyone interested in learning more – we hope to see everyone there, from graduates to marketing to HR!  

    Why is the BJSS Health & Social Care Community of Practice Important? 

    Since 2012, BJSS has been a trusted partner to the NHS and public sector 

    As one of the largest technology providers to the NHS, we love collaborating with our health and social care clients to find innovative and cost-effective technology solutions to their toughest challenges.  

    Our knowledge and experience are what make us different. So how do we continue to grow that knowledge and share that experience as we work on even greater and more complex health challenges? How do we maintain our culture of learning and growth in a world where most of us now work virtually?  

    Communities of Practice enable us to focus on sharing best practices and creating new knowledge to advance our practice areas. We already have Communities of Practice that focus on improving and expanding our technical and delivery capabilities.  

    This new Community of Practice will allow us to do the same in health and social care. 

    In the past 18+ months, we’ve seen how our skills and expertise have enabled us to support the UK response to the Covid-19, from the award-winning Covid-19 risk stratification tool to the Emergency Department Digital Integration System and the Test and Trace Halo platform, to name a few.  

    The Health & Social Care Community of Practice provides us with an opportunity to share all our learnings from engagements like these, both from an individual and company perspective. As a result, our health and social care clients will benefit from a service that is continuously improved.   

    Simultaneously, we can leverage the fact that we are now all used to coming together virtually. Rather than focusing on one BJSS office location, we can create a virtual community that spans not only our UK offices but connects us with our colleagues in Europe, Australia and the United States. What might initially seem like a disadvantage can be used to create even greater connections and opportunities for learning.  

    Our First ‘Focus Topic’  Supporting Innovation in the NHS 

    In the months ahead, we will present several ‘Focus Topics’ at our Health & Social Care Community of Practice events. These will be a combination of BJSSers sharing project stories as well as external speakers who can share insights and innovations that will enhance the way we are able to meet customer needs.  

    We are very excited to be kick-starting the BJSS Health & Social Care Community of Practice with a Focus Topic on supporting innovation in the NHS. Pedro Ferreira, (Senior Service Designer & Head of Delivery in Portugal) will share his and the team’s experiences working with NHS England/Improvement to define and develop a single, national, online service for health innovators seeking to navigate the innovation pathway and the NHS infrastructure.  

    Taking a GDS approach, the project has now passed Alpha and Beta, with the aim of taking it to live. This is a fantastic example of applying user-centred design to both the NHS’s organisational and technical challenges.  

    We’re really looking forward to our first Health & Social Care Community of Practice event on 21 October. Having the opportunity to come together as a community, even if it is virtual, with all the other people within our organisation who are also passionate about health and social care, feels like an excellent opportunity for learning and sharing. But fundamentally, this will enable us to improve the way we work with our clients going forward.  

    To find out more about the work BJSS does in health and social care, please visit https://www.bjss.com/health/ or contact Tom Mellor, Client Principal - Health and Social Care via email tom.mellor@bjss.com