All the latest News and industry updates from HWA
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For over 25 years, we have been providing healthcare practitioners with valuable research intelligence and consultancy with which to better understand what matters most to their patients, whilst helping them to clarify and address the needs of their staff. We bring a dynamic and proactive approach to market research, analysis, customer satisfaction surveys and incentive programmes.
In the blue chip sector, HWA provides customer market research, staff surveys and incentive initiatives where understanding the needs of the customer and incentivising the sales professional results in enhanced client satisfaction and increased sales revenue.
Our portfolio of services enables clients in the healthcare and blue chip sectors to probe, understand and engage with their audience.
Shows a bright future for residents in independent care homes
Contrary to many current media reports and speculation, it is not all doom and despondency in the UK care home sector. Nearly half (45.6%) of UK care home residents recently surveyed as part of a comprehensive ‘opt-in’ survey across independent care homes confirmed the quality of service they received in the last six months was improving and 95.3% of residents are likely to recommend their care home to a friend.
"She is happy here, best decision she made coming into care, she is no longer lonely. All the staff are very helpful and pleasant. No request is ever too much, always putting resident's needs first."
The research was exclusively conducted by specialists in healthcare research Howard Warwick Associates (HWA - www.howardwarwick.co.uk as part of the nationwide ‘Care to Talk’ survey of care home residents. Over 1,000 residents from 43 independent care home groups, each with a minimum of 15 residents in each home and no more than five homes in any group, were polled during November and December 2012. “All too often we are confronted with negative images of care homes but our survey results clearly demonstrate that standards have improved and residents are enjoying a good quality of life,” stated David Leach, Managing Director of HWA.
“95% of the residents polled like their rooms and 97% go further to say that the common areas are comfortable. 94% also confirm the buildings they live in and the grounds that surround them please them.” Even more revealing is that 98% of respondents said staff were helpful and friendly; dispelling the myth that residential homes are full of misery, despair and low standards. As one respondent said: “I am very happy with my life here, it could not be better – lovely staff, lovely room.”
Despite the popular negative images, the residents are offered a variety of daily activities to choose from resulting in nine out of ten respondents participating in sufficient activities to keep them occupied. 93% were also happy with the choice of activities available to them. Another resident commented: “I am blind but still have the opportunity to become involved in activities suitable for me.”
David concluded: “Of the 43 UK care homes we surveyed, the majority of residents were truly comfortable in their environment and content with the positive approach to senior living and wellbeing. The underlying message is that there are many great care homes operating up and down the country but unfortunately it is the odd few that create the negative headlines. There is always going to be the odd exception but in the main much is being done across the care home sector to improve services and therefore the general image the general public has of them.”
HWA’s care home resident survey offers a true ray of sunshine in these dismal difficult times. For more information on the independent research and customer survey services available or commentary on the nationwide ‘Care to Talk’ survey of care home residents, please contact David Leach at Howard Warwick Associates: Tel: 020 8891 0880 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
HWA has just signed what it believes is the last private London hospital not to already use its research services and its initial task was to develop, print and start to implement its first survey in less than four weeks from contract signature.
The Hospital of St John and St Elizabeth is confident that it already offers the highest quality of care to patients but needed to qualify and substantiate this so turned to HWA to develop and implement a really cost effective but comprehensive, ongoing survey programme. HWA's knowledge and experience, honed over the years working for other similar hospitals across the UK, is precisely what attracts many to retain its survey and research services. Implementing surveys on an ongoing basis for others also meant that in this instance no time or effort was wasted in setting the standards and benchmarks and that data would be collected without delay for the entire second half of 2012.
"It took us just a couple of weeks from contract signature to develop, agree and implement the first survey questionnaire and identify the best reporting methods to use,” stated David Leach, an HWA director. “It’s also testament to our professionalism that we have now signed what we believe was the last private London hospital not to already use our services. We are increasingly being retained by other public and private hospitals across the UK and even further afield to develop and implement an array of cost effective surveys for them."
After the initial survey is underway HWA expects to develop additional elements and broaden the target base to include staff and others in order to provide real feedback from across the hospital and help ensure its winning services meet with ongoing approval.
Founded in 1856 in St Johns Wood, The Hospital of St John and St Elizabeth is one of the country's largest independent charity hospitals with over 600 doctors that can treat almost any illness on an inpatient and outpatient basis. With state-of-the-art facilities and five fully equipped operating theatres, all bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms in luxury surroundings but all profits go to funding its on-site hospice - St John's - which treats over 2000 terminally ill patients and their families every year.
Having great people in any business helps ensure that it provides great service.
HWA strongly believes in developing excellence and encouraging new talent and over the past 12 months has won several business awards that recognise this including ‘Employer of the Year 2011’. The most recent of these was in late June when Rebecca Power was named ‘Apprentice of the Year’ by recruitment and apprenticeship training provider Way to Work, for her sterling efforts in achieving her NVQ3 in Business Administration in almost record time. Emma Keep, another apprentice at HWA, was also nominated for this award.
Rebecca joined HWA back in October 2010 and has increasingly taken on responsibility for managing a number of critical tasks in the nine strong market research department within HWA. Similarly Emma joined the same team at HWA less than two years ago and has just completed the final elements of her NVQ3 in Business Administration.
Rebecca commented: “Being nominated for the prestigious Apprentice of the Year 2012 award was great but to have gone on to be named as the overall winner was the icing on the cake. The Way to Work scheme has enabled so many aspiring young people like me to gain real office experience as well as a recognised qualification. Being given the chance to shape my own future and contribute to the success of a business gives me real pride.”
“It’s important to provide young people with the opportunity to demonstrate just what they can achieve,” explained Paul Leach, an HWA director. “Both Rebecca and Emma have made a real impact to our business. They have proved that they are valuable team players with real skills and energy and have now both been offered full time positions here. We currently have another apprentice who joined about a year ago and is just completing her NVQ2. I’d recommend other businesses to seriously look at taking on a professional apprentice as it can have a real positive impact on a business and would definitely look to take another one on ourselves as and when the business has capacity and scope.”
The National Apprenticeship Service is open to people 16 to 24 year olds and helps eligible employers offer young people employment through the Apprenticeship programme, by providing wage grants to assist new employers in recruiting their first apprentice.
Some people work for personal fulfilment; others for the love of what they do; or even the camaraderie and interaction with customers or co-workers. And for some it's all about accomplishing goals or contributing to something larger than themselves. Money is the reward we all require to meet and maintain certain fundamental needs and pay the bills but for many it is not the primary driver so here we briefly look at what else incentivises us to perform better.
That said, it would be a mistake to underplay the importance of money as this is often used as the measure of a company; and without fair remuneration, businesses stand to loose their best people to a better paying competitor. But assume that you are comparable in the market, simply paying people more will not, in the main, improve performance or loyalty; so what does.
More than anything else, employees want to be valued and recognised for a job well done by those they hold in high esteem. It may be as simple as giving praise where praise is due but often acknowledging a job well done and rewarding it in the right way can be quite straight forward if you can:
So recognition of each of these is quite simple particularly if packaged in the right way but every person is different so to try and make one option fit all would be wrong. Incentive programmes typically address each of these motivational drivers in slightly different ways but when combined make a winning formula; which is why a well conceived and delivered programme is so important.
It may also be as simple as rewarding people with additional time off but more often than not offering something 'that money cannot normally buy' is a real motivator. HWA has developed several of the most memorable reward programmes for a number of well known consumer brands; and the cost of developing and implementing these is often a magnitude less than the increases in sales revenue or return on investment they achieve.
Being designed around something that would not typically be attainable by an individual is also a key way to increase appeal and instil positive drive which often motivates individuals to strive even harder to achieve the necessary targets.
But a closing thought; getting it wrong can be even more damaging. One of the biggest demotivating issues in any initiative is if an individual puts in all the effort but falls just short of the required mark; so getting the incremental steps right is critical. Or even worse, if people don't perform but are still seen to benefit or persistently don't perform and no action is taken will have an adverse affect. It's not just about getting the top rewards right but also managing the entire process and the people involved in the process.
If you want to know more about developing and implementing the perfect staff incentive programme that meets your specific targets and requirements but doesn't cost the earth or deliver the wrong results call HWA on 020 8891 0880 and we'll happily discuss what can be achieved.