Skip to navigation Skip to main content

Reflections on ADASS Spring Seminar – delivering sustainable transformation

Joanna Dufton

It was great to connect with colleagues old and new at the Association of Directors Adult Social Services (ADASS) Spring Seminar at the end of April, and hear more about the pioneering work being delivered across the country.

There were some excellent sessions and discussion on how to address the challenges facing the sector. This included the launch of ADASS’s report ‘Time to act: a roadmap for reforming care and support in England’ which sets out how care and support can be transformed over the next 10 years. An excellent summary of current thinking and key actions – a ‘must read’ for the sector as they look to the future following the paused charging reforms.

We ran a workshop with the City of Wolverhampton’s Director of Adult Services, Becky Wilkinson. We were delighted to have a room full of delegates keen to discuss how they can continue to innovate in such a challenging environment and make a positive difference to people’s lives. Becky shared how Wolverhampton’s adult services have continued to press on and deliver their local ambitions despite national uncertainties. Amongst the success stories and lessons learnt, one thing was clear: taking staff on the journey with you and working collaboratively with people and partners is imperative in achieving long-lasting change.

At IMPOWER, we believe that the first step to sustainable change and building a resilient organisation is ambition setting, followed by building confidence and delivering impact at scale. Given the challenges facing the sector, we understand this is easier said than done. Our work with adult social care supports leadership teams to do this.

During the workshop we asked delegates about the status of their ambition for adult social care in their local area, and many shared their insight with colleagues. There were five key themes:

  • There is strong ambition. Directors of Adult Social Services (DASSs) and their teams have strong local ambitions. Like Wolverhampton, DASSs are aiming to achieve something beyond responding to repeated crisis or external pressures.
  • Involvement of partners and people is essential. These ambitions cannot be achieved by adult social care alone. Support and involvement from residents and partners across the health and care system and beyond is crucial.
  • Transformation requires buy-in: Plans cannot be achieved without the support of the chief executive and corporate leadership team. They must be actively involved in planning.
  • Defining outcomes and impact is challenging. Distilling an overall vision or ambition into something that is measurable is often difficult.
  • It’s hard to know where to start. With so many competing priorities, building momentum and knowing what to focus on first can create a barrier for change.

The strong ambition from Directors of adult social care and their teams to achieve better outcomes for people is clear, but getting started can feel overwhelming. Our approach to change helps teams navigate this complexity and build confidence amongst teams to drive forward the ideas and opportunities identified.

If you are interested in finding out more about how IMPOWER can support your organisation to deliver sustainable change for adult social care, please do get in touch.

Written by

Joanna Dufton

Delivery Director, IMPOWER



Sign up for the latest thinking on delivering sustainable change and better public services

No spam; unsubscribe easily at any time. Learn more in our Privacy Policy.