Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust

Business Intelligence

Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust



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Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust provides services pertaining to mental health, learning disabilities and community support across Greater Manchester.

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Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust provides services pertaining to mental health, learning disabilities and community support across Greater Manchester. The Trust has 5,500* (as of 30 June 2019) dedicated staff members who deliver care in six boroughs of the region, working across health centre community clinics, GP practices and hospitals.

Becoming a Data-Driven Organisation

Pennine Care provides an array of diverse services to Greater Manchester. With thousands of staff members serving even more members of the community, it’s crucial that the recordkeeping and data analysis systems be fit for the needs of the industry. From the intake of data and patient records to their storage and ultimate visualisation, Pennine wanted some significant rejuvenation to its analytics.

Ella Worsdale, Head of Information at Pennine, had been working at the Trust for over 14 years and is responsible for the development of reports, datasets and reporting tools to support internal and external reporting requirements. For many years, the Trust had been working from basic SQL Reporting Services that could not provide the clear data insights the organisation needed. Further, when it came to interpreting those data insights, Excel—their previous application—was unable to deliver the innovative and advanced visualisations they sought. In order for the Trust to lay the strong foundation it needed for future growth, Ella struck out in search of a partner to guide Pennine toward her vision of having a central data visualisation solution that would afford managers easy access to their management information. She turned to InterWorks.

Solutions Architect Glen Robinson initially supported the Trust in creating a new plan to meet their data needs. Ella had identified Tableau as a solution that could meet her vision, and the Interworks team supported its implementation and enabled Pennine to not only analyse all of the organisation’s data but also visualise it in a clear, dynamic way. After producing a proof of concept, it became clear that Tableau could streamline and centralise the Trust’s data effectively.

Enhanced Performance with Tableau

Before the implementation of Tableau, analysts shouldered the burden of many of the data issues that emerged throughout the organisation. Whenever reports were sent out, the quality of the data was questioned, creating a lack of confidence in reporting and doubts in the trustworthiness of the organisation itself and data at large. Once Tableau was introduced, it was able to identify those gaps and address them, proving the data’s reliability consistently and restoring faith in the organisation’s insights. As a result of this, clearer delineations of ownership have emerged so that data analysts no longer wrestle with these issues in isolation. With a solid data foundation, they have been empowered to obtain, analyse and deliver data with freedom and dependability.

Benefits of Tableau

  • Restored data trust
  • Faster, more automated reporting
  • Empowerment of data analysts

In addition to rectifying breaks in data trust, Pennine Care has seen an immediate improvement in its data performance. Tableau’s reporting capabilities have enabled the Trust to not only get ahead of performance issues that previously were masked by poor data quality but also to capitalise on opportunities to communicate the organisation’s data. Tableau dashboards are now presenting and analysing data from over 50 different systems, including clinical and corporate information systems. As presentation assets, the dashboards provide well-designed visualisations, support over 600 performance and quality metrics and communicate insights in a comprehensible manner. As a result, Board members and other stakeholders are better able to understand their data and make informed, effective decisions with it. Reporting also became more seamless, automated and easier to execute, which facilitated faster and more confident responsiveness to ad hoc queries for the Trust, especially when it came to using Tableau for the Trust’s last Care Quality Commission (CQC) process.

“The CQC audit would have been extremely cumbersome without Tableau and the work we have done within our data warehouse. The Trust’s performance framework was visible and went down really well with the CQC by having Tableau in place.”
– Ella Worsdale, Head of Information at Pennine Care

Managing Data Literacy to Ensure Future Success

With the new framework in place, training and user adoption were paramount. The Trust was starting from scratch with Tableau and required strategic guidance to educate and enable users so that the full scope of Tableau’s impact could be felt. Interworks consultants delivered comprehensive Tableau Desktop training to Pennine Care’s Information Team to ensure they have the right skills to support their dashboard consumers. With the support and guidance of InterWorks, the Trust quickly was brought into the fold of the greater Tableau community and received customised and comprehensive training in the software.

InterWorks facilitated the speedy rollout of the Tableau eight core server and handled all the training throughout the Trust, but Tableau’s implementation was just one piece of a wider organisation-wide initiative to increase data literacy and become truly data-driven. Workshops have been hosted for the Trust’s business partners, as well as their managers and upper-level leadership, to educate and equip users with the right skills to properly interpret the data, enabling them to use it to support both operational and strategic decisions.

It is critical to have an adoption strategy in place to support operational managers. This is a key part of supporting users through a new journey toward deepened data literacy. The Trust offers their managers one-to-one sessions or drop-in sessions to field questions about data, address new dashboard requests and ensure the perpetual education and sharpening of Tableau skills. Engagement and buy-in throughout the Trust was key, and using Tableau to replace systems demanded a cultural shift; InterWorks also stepped in to help create a strategic plan that complemented the Trust’s vision for user adoption. Fostering this culture and equipping users with the necessary skills to wield their data effectively has been a necessary step along the path the Trust envisions for itself.

Continued Support and Tableau Advocacy

Tableau has become the bedrock of the Trust’s business intelligence strategy. Vision for expanding user adoption and introducing it to the organisation’s leadership has gained significant momentum, and as a true advocate for Tableau and data literacy, Ella created a Centre of Excellence within the Trust. Plus, she is the founder and co-leader of the North West Tableau User Group.

In addition to continuing to provide one-on-one training to the organisation’s users, InterWorks offers consistent support in the Trust’s Centre of Excellence and advocacy for the North West TUG. While Tableau has been the springboard for success for Pennine Care, InterWorks has provided the right framework and guidance to leverage the platform in a targeted approach to analytics success. Authenticity and the pursuit of excellence is central to this work, and a genuine relationship underpins each project, allowing InterWorks to not only be the expert service provider but also a trusted advisor throughout the analytics process.

Relationship is the key word here. The successful rollout of Tableau in Pennine Care was critical in enabling us to continue our need to embed a data-driven culture. When working on projects like this, you need support from all types of people, and having a good working relationship with all those involved is vital. This is what we have with InterWorks; they have definitely been a pivotal piece of our Tableau story.
– Ella Worsdale, Head of Information at Pennine Care

A Data-Driven Path for Success

Data is a crucial asset for growth in any organisation, and with it now being in such high demand for the Trust, individualised training and relational support is invaluable. With the right data infrastructure in place, software that yields trustworthy and relevant data insights and an educated network of users who are passionate about Tableau and its capabilities, the Trust is now positioned to reach its data-driven goals and build upon the firm foundation InterWorks helped them establish.



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