New Directions

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by New Directions's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from New Directions is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

www.ndirections.co.uk

BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
26 | SERENDIPITY HEALTHCARE
leads to costly and lengthy delays.
We ask for a uniform approach to
thisproblem.
The debate over zero-hour
contracts
As a company that offers contracts to
our carers, we have found that this
option is not taken up by many of our
carers. The carers appear to prefer
flexibility at short notice allowing
them to work around their own life
commitments. We are therefore not
convinced that abolishing zero-hour
contracts would benefit social care.
It would be more likely to drive more
care staff to leave the industry and
to increase pressure on the care
providers leading more of them to
ceasetrading.
Financial pressure is also placed
on care providers when clients are
admitted to hospital. While we
acknowledge that we are paid for the
first week that they are hospitalised, a
recent step forward, we are still told
that we must keep open the place
for the client for two weeks without
any further funding. This places
unpredictability on both planning our
logistics of care as well as being a
financial penalty.
Moving forward; developing
further
We plan to continue to grow and, in
the future, provide further training to
carers so that we can deal with more
complex cases. We remain optimistic
that any funding provided by the
government will allow for people
with additional care needs to get the
support they need, and we do hope
that we can expand and play a part in
providing that support.
No matter the developments within
our sector or the effects of any
legislative changes, we will continue to
provide the best possible care for our
service users.
Dedicated staff help out
wherever they can
No matter the
developments
within our
sector or the
effects of any
legislative
changes, we
will continue
to provide the
best possible
care for our
service users
27NEW DIRECTIONS |
CARE
Managing Director Mark Fox
Supporting people across
the community
Established by Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council as a
local authority trading company in 2007, New Directions
has increased turnover by over 20 per cent in the last two
years. The organisation has also taken measures to engage
further with the community, with a specific focus on improving
understanding and diversity. Managing Director Mark Fox
explains that much of the success has come as a result of taking
on new services, investing in staff and implementing a string of
core values.
Our values have been co-produced and defined by the individuals using our services,
ensuring that we have their best needs in mind, always. These values not only
determine how we make decisions, but also how we run the company and implement
change. As a value-based organisation, our journey, while in its early stages, is having
a hugely positive impact on the lives of those we are so honoured to support.
Our core values
We offer adult service users rewarding and fulfilling lives through individualised
support and care, while also delivering peace of mind for families and loved ones. At
the centre of our work are four key values, implemented throughout the organisation:
»Big hearted. We are proud of the quality of care, empathy and kindness we offer
to the people we support and each other.
»Count on us. You can rely on us to meet the needs of those we support and
eachother.
FACTS ABOUT
NEW DIRECTIONS
»Managing Director: Mark Fox
»Established in 2007 as local
authority-controlled company
»Based in Merseyside
»No. of employees: Over 450
»Services: Care and support
»New Directions supports over
720 individuals per day across
numerous care settings
»CQC: “Outstanding”, 2019
New Directions
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
28 | NEW DIRECTIONS
»Together as one.We take pride
in working as a team to deliver a
person-centred service.
»People focused. We recognise the
importance of transparency, trust,
recognition and development within
our workforce.
To ensure we can implement these
core values, we employ over 450
dedicated, enthusiastic and caring
staff working across a wide range of
services, meeting the needs of several
thousand adults across the Sefton
area and beyond. We are responsible
for providing individuals with 24-hour
support, in various settings, such as
residential care, day care, respite,
domiciliary care, reablement and
Shared Lives.
One of our key aims is supporting
and enabling the local authority to
achieve a stable adult social care
market, both as a preferred provider
and during market failure. This creates,
however, several operational and
financialchallenges.
Making staff wellbeing a
priority
One such challenge is zero-hour
contracts, a common practice within
this sector. As a responsible employer,
our policy is to not replace permanent
contracts with zero-hour contracts.
One recent example saw New Directions
transferring 120 zero-hour domiciliary
care staff from a failing provider.
Through our policy, we now have all
except a few relief staff employed on
permanent contracts, providing valuable
security to local care workers and
theirfamilies.
Furthermore, we apply the national
living wage to all staff, irrespective of
age, with 46 per cent of our workforce
currently being paid above the real
living wage. Should the real living
wage remain at the current rate, this
percentage will increase to 94.5 per cent
by April 2020.
Much of our revenue stems from the
public purse, and, as such, austerity
has created significant challenges to
commissioners and providers over
recent years. Our desire to be a real
living wage employer has, therefore,
experienced restraints, particularly with
local authority funding formulas and
what local councils can afford to pay.
Looking after staff through a health
and wellbeing strategy with a focus
on promoting good mental health is
one way the company is differentiating
itself in the marketplace to improve
staff retention and to be seen as the
employer of choice.
Turning community presence
into contribution
We are involved in numerous
community projects, providing
contributions to the community
and supporting individuals to be
independent. One recent project, in
partnership with the Anne Frank Trust,
involved hosting an exhibition on the
life of Anne Frank. The event, taking
the form of a pop-up museum, took
place in a disused shopping centre
unit and coincided with the year
that would have been Anne Frank’s
90thbirthday.
A team that excels
Our co-
production
journey began
by recognising
that it is always
possible to
become more
people
focused
BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
28 | NEW DIRECTIONS
»Together as one.We take pride
in working as a team to deliver a
person-centred service.
»People focused. We recognise the
importance of transparency, trust,
recognition and development within
our workforce.
To ensure we can implement these
core values, we employ over 450
dedicated, enthusiastic and caring
staff working across a wide range of
services, meeting the needs of several
thousand adults across the Sefton
area and beyond. We are responsible
for providing individuals with 24-hour
support, in various settings, such as
residential care, day care, respite,
domiciliary care, reablement and
Shared Lives.
One of our key aims is supporting
and enabling the local authority to
achieve a stable adult social care
market, both as a preferred provider
and during market failure. This creates,
however, several operational and
financialchallenges.
Making staff wellbeing a
priority
One such challenge is zero-hour
contracts, a common practice within
this sector. As a responsible employer,
our policy is to not replace permanent
contracts with zero-hour contracts.
One recent example saw New Directions
transferring 120 zero-hour domiciliary
care staff from a failing provider.
Through our policy, we now have all
except a few relief staff employed on
permanent contracts, providing valuable
security to local care workers and
theirfamilies.
Furthermore, we apply the national
living wage to all staff, irrespective of
age, with 46 per cent of our workforce
currently being paid above the real
living wage. Should the real living
wage remain at the current rate, this
percentage will increase to 94.5 per cent
by April 2020.
Much of our revenue stems from the
public purse, and, as such, austerity
has created significant challenges to
commissioners and providers over
recent years. Our desire to be a real
living wage employer has, therefore,
experienced restraints, particularly with
local authority funding formulas and
what local councils can afford to pay.
Looking after staff through a health
and wellbeing strategy with a focus
on promoting good mental health is
one way the company is differentiating
itself in the marketplace to improve
staff retention and to be seen as the
employer of choice.
Turning community presence
into contribution
We are involved in numerous
community projects, providing
contributions to the community
and supporting individuals to be
independent. One recent project, in
partnership with the Anne Frank Trust,
involved hosting an exhibition on the
life of Anne Frank. The event, taking
the form of a pop-up museum, took
place in a disused shopping centre
unit and coincided with the year
that would have been Anne Frank’s
90thbirthday.
A team that excels
Our co-
production
journey began
by recognising
that it is always
possible to
become more
people
focused
29NEW DIRECTIONS |
CARE
During the event, adults with learning
disabilities and individuals on the autistic
spectrum were museum curators and
tour guides for members of the public.
Our drama social enterprise produced
and performed plays and dances at
the local shopping centre, improving
individuals’ confidence and creating a
meaningful contribution to local culture
andeducation.
Activities and partnerships like this not
only spotlight the key issues of identity,
isolation, discrimination and equality,
but also the importance of promoting
diversity and understanding, which are
very real issues for local people who
sadly experience hate crime.
Our people-focused approach
Our co-production journey began by
recognising that it is always possible to
become more people focused, a value
that those we work with say is important
to them. Individuals from across the
company agreed that one way to
let people live our values is through
artwork. A tree, depicting and bringing
the values to life, and which symbolises
strong foundations, shows people
together as one and portrays them
enjoying life and gaining confidence.
Making friends is prominent in each
service, reminding individuals, carers and
staff about what matters most.
Our story and journey are told through
individuals, one of whom started a
Shared Lives placement three years
ago. At that time, he was overweight
and taking medication for diabetes.
Today, after losing weight, and free
from medication, he has attained a
cooking qualification and is employed
as a kitchen assistant in one of our
care homes: a real example of our
person-centred enabling role that helps
improve people’s lives and contributes
to reducing health costs in the system.
The New Directions community, which
includes health professionals and social
workers, is complimentary about our
people-focused approach to individuals,
staff and carers. This approach has
been acknowledged by the CQC’s
latest inspection of Hudson Road
residential care home, rating the service
as “outstanding” stating that “staff
were extremely talented involving
people taking into consideration
people’s sensory and mobility needs”.
We look forward to continuing our
journey, interacting with our local
community and implementing our four
core values.
Our story and
journey are
told through
individuals
Encouraging
participation in sport
and the arts
Supporting individuals to
be independent

www.ndirections.co.uk

This article was sponsored by New Directions. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss.

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss

Even by the standards of the day –this has been one of the most exciting and unpredictable years in British politics.

The leadership election we’ve just seen marks a huge moment in our country’s history. This government is taking a decisive new direction, embracing the opportunities of Brexit and preparing our country to flourish outside the EU.

As international trade secretary, I’ll be driving forward work on the free trade agreements that are going to be a priority for the government. Free trade isn’t just an abstract concept bandied around by technocrats. It is crucial for a strong economy and for the ability of families to make ends meet. Free trade benefits people in every part of our country, as British firms export to new markets and people doing the weekly shop have access to a wider choice of goods at lower prices.

The essence of free trade is in the title: freedom. It’s about giving people the power to exchange their goods without heavy government taxation or interference. Commerce and free exchange are the engine room of prosperity and social mobility. I’m determined to tackle the forces who want to hold that back.

One of my priorities is agreeing an exciting new free trade deal with the US, building on the great relationship between our two countries and the Prime Minister and US President. But I’ll also be talking to other partners including New Zealand, Australia and fast-growing Asian markets.

And with the EU too, we want a friendly and constructive relationship, as constitutional equals, and as friends and partners in facing the challenges that lie ahead – a relationship based on a deep free trade agreement. Our country produces some of the world’s most successful exports, and the opportunity to bring these to the rest of the world should make us all excited about the future. It is this excitement, optimism and ambition which I believe will come to define this government.

For too long now, we have been told Britain isn’t big or important enough to survive outside the EU – that we have to accept a deal that reflects our reduced circumstances. I say that’s rubbish. With the right policies in place, we can be the most competitive, free-thinking, prosperous nation on Earth exporting to the world and leading in new developments like AI. To do that, we’ll give the brilliant next generation of entrepreneurs the tools they need to succeed. Since 2015, there has been a staggering 85 per cent rise in the number of businesses set up by 18 to 24 year olds – twice the level set up by the same age group in France and Germany. We’ll help them flourish by championing enterprise, cutting taxes and making regulation flexible and responsive to their needs.

As we do that, we’ll level up and unite all parts of the UK with great transport links, fibre broadband in every home and proper school funding, so everyone shares in our country’s success.

2019 has been the year of brewing economic and political revolution. 2020 will be the year when a revitalised Conservative government turbo charges the economy, boosts prospects for people across the country, and catapults Britain back to the forefront of the world stage.



Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss
Secretary of State for International Development