Care is changing: Cello employee Laura on the Accezz approach

Cello is an Accezz client and operates in care and services to assist people with disabilities with living, working and leisure activities in the ’s-Hertogenbosch-Zaltbommel region. The care provided is changing because Cello now receives less government funding. In order to ensure that clients nonetheless still receive good care, employees will for example be asked to be more flexible to enable a new form of assistance, along with the client’s network, with volunteers or with other partners in health care and wellbeing. The way in which assistance is provided will also be investigated, so that improvements can be made. Cello is currently running a trial, assisted by Accezz, an organisation that specialises in improving work processes. Accezz looks at current working methods, proposes changes and guides employees in implementing them. The trial is taking place in the group home Bolakker 4 in Haaren. Employee Laura Schonlau talked to us about it.

A combination of theory and practice

“The trial started with a couple of meetings,” Laura says. “They were led by Louise Spijkers from Accezz and our cluster manager Eugène Henst. We were told why Accezz was coming to observe the home, and what steps would be necessary to achieve that goal. The meetings were both theoretical and practical, and the content was relevant to everyday life in the home where I work. One of the practical tasks we were given was to do a puzzle as quickly as we could. The way we did this revealed a lot of information about the roles in the team, the problems we’re facing and the time we lost due to the way we did the puzzle. Lost time was then immediately linked to our work. Together we looked at the most noticeable forms of time loss in our team.”

Laura’s own challenge

“For example, personally I find it hard to switch between different tasks. When I’m working at the computer, I’m often interrupted because clients need my attention. It takes me a long time to pick up my concentration again. How do you find the right balance between what the client needs and the other things which are also part of the job?”

Next steps

“After that Louise and Eugène came to observe us at various times. They paid particular attention to how we organise our time. We also filled out a list for each client describing all the daily activities involved in the work and how much time we spend on each activity. These lists and observations were then translated into a proposal for a weekly programme. The programme aims to make the most efficient use of time. In addition, we also examined clients’ care service packages to see who is entitled to what. We began testing this weekly programme at the end of January.”

Result

“The programme has obviously only just got started and I couldn’t yet say what the concrete results will be. Personally I can already see the benefits because we as a team are now all on the same page with the cluster manager and Accezz. It is truly a collaborative process, which allows space for personal challenges and improvements. The clients still don’t see much of a change with the process we’re going through. However, in a later phase, I expect that we’ll be able to spend more valuable time on the direct care of our clients. We’re working towards that in a very focused way.”