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I am always keen to hear from people on business / speaking and writing opportunities or you just may simply want to have a chat - believe that meeting new people is the route to everything so happy to just chew the fat! 

76 St Gerards Road
Solihull, B91 1UD
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Blog

Adam Hutchison's Blog - just a little space in the world were i air my thoughts on anything and everything i am either involved in or enjoy. Many of you may wish to skip by and ignore my meandering thoughts but others may find them informative...

 

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(Press Release) RISK V REWARD THE EMPLOYEE-EMPLOYER CONUNDRUM by Adam Hutchison

Adam Hutchison

Like most of us at some point in our careers, Adam Hutchison woke up one Monday morning dreading the week ahead and wondering if it was all worth it. Unlike most of us, Adam decided to take action. This book is the result …  Available Now on Amazon

Adam Hutchison has learned the hard way how to run a company and manage staff, through wide experience in senior positions in the telecoms and private healthcare sectors. Now he has distilled his knowledge and experience into Risk v Reward, a down-to-earth and straightforward account of what really matters when building a business and improving performance, including: 

Choosing, hiring, managing and retaining staff

Motivating and mentoring

Recognising and managing different personality types

Management structure and how to make it work

Creating and maintaining a culture

The author knows, from experience, that it is people that make a business great, and this book shows how to get the best out of those within your teams. 

Written by a senior executive with wide and varied industry experience. 

Will enable any junior or middle manager to get better results from staff. 

Detailed examples throughout to show how to make it work. 

Author Adam Hutchison says, “What makes a business great? The answer every time is people. People are paramount to any business. This book explores the ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’ of successful people-management. I hope it will help managers and team leaders in businesses of all sizes. Whether they employ 5 people or 5000, my message is the same: human beings need rewards to perform well. Positive comments drive attitudes and behaviours. Forget these simple rules at your own risk!” 

About the author: Adam Hutchison, MA, BSc has spent the last 15 years working in both the private and public sectors, operating within corporate and SME environments, working at the operational level on the front line and doing everything from running departments to operating his own businesses. www.adamhutchison.com Twitter: @adamhutchison80

Media opportunities: Extracts/serialisation. The author is available for interviews. 

Local UK interest: The author is currently based in Solihull (near Birmingham, West Midlands). He has also lived and worked in London and Medway (Kent). 

To request a review copy or to be put in touch with the author, please contact

Elly Donovan PR elly@ellydonovan.co.uk tel: 0790 508 7779 / 01273 205 246 www.ellydonovan.co.uk twitter: @EllyDonovanPR facebook.com/Elly Donovan Linked-In: Elly Donovan PR 

“Keep your customers close, and your competitors closer” – Seeking innovation and collaboration in the care sector..

Adam Hutchison

Adam Hutchison – Managing Director of Belmont Sandbanks Care Group & Vice Chair of the Kent Integrated Care Alliance.

Having come from a parallel universe to the care sector, having gained my experience in corporate telecommunications. The Care industry took some getting used to, to understand it’s almost unique nature when it comes to business activities. Although the sector is heavily present in the media and has ownership from corporate VC’s and managing partners to independent businesses. The industry is very different in how it operates day to day. The standard business activities are present of course, but the sheer plethora of requirements involved in this sector are so diverse incorporating finance, construction, people management and almost most importantly high levels of regulations.

As a business sector it actually involves more facets of understanding than any other industry, as the requirements of owning a business in this sector are so broad. Although, for me personally there are 2 main themes which, are most prominent right now.

Firstly is that of collaboration, the title of this article is a play on the reality that the sector is unique in how it works when it comes to customers and competitors. This is probably the only industry in the country whereby you get the feeling that you are closer to your competitors than your customers. And when I say customers I do not mean our service users / residents for whom we care for but our stakeholder customers who fund care which is predominantly the Local Authorities. The levels of collaboration in the sector between your competitive agencies is unprecedented, with the allocation of national groups such as Care England, Care Association Alliance and the UKHCA to the local care associations such as KiCA (www.kica.care) of which I am vice-chair. The market works together to share best practice, knowledge and develop strategies to enable services to deliver the best possible care to those in need. This is something, which is sadly missed when discussing with our major customers the Local Authorities. This concept sounds alien indeed but the harsh facts of working in the care industry. Associations such as KiCA have become valued entities to bring providers together but also suppliers offering a platform for engagement to help businesses excel.

This brings to the second point of innovation, the care sector is considered to sometimes be behind in terms of innovating but this a very blinkered view. With the heightened collaboration between care providers through avenues discussed here, has created group development power to work with national organisations such as SEHTA and private suppliers to create innovative models of care and supply of services. This does not only give cost advantages but also development as by sharing best practices the products and services introduced to the market become more fit for purpose ensuring that they are of use to the sector rather than a wasted cost. Cash flow and capital is king like in any business and with the constant discussion of low care fees the search for innovative cost saving solutions are paramount to any care business strategy but its knowing what is right and when to implement these innovations. They are not just about technology the delivery of care for individuals has to be the pinnacle of each business otherwise why do it. The standard of care at present is extremely high due to great innovative thinking inside businesses that care and from agencies externally such as Ladder to the Moon who are now present on the CQC PIR as a mark of Outstanding (www.laddertothemoon.co.uk) further evidence this innovative thinking which is sometimes unheralded.

It is with the growth of local care associations / alliances, will further improve the collaboration and innovation in the care sector. Developing a long-term future of outstanding care for individuals who need it. We all know that care is inevitable and the private care sector will be leading the developments in care, encouraging from within to what is already becoming a brighter future for all concerned.

The Care Sector – Where it’s at in the UK…

Adam Hutchison

The UK care sector is staring at a massive tsunami coming its way. A combination of factors such as budget cuts in local authorities, the new living wage and direct payments have made the traditional care business models unsustainable. Most large care providers expect as many as 50% of their existing contracts to become ‘unprofitable’ in the next 18 months. Just to set some perspective, collectively these contracts are worth more than £5 Billion per year and employ more than 500,000 care workers. Imagine the consequences of half of these contracts becoming unprofitable in 18 months!

While the funders especially local authorities have had a role in this, care providers also have to share some of the blame for the situation they find themselves in. Care organisations haven’t really moved with the times. Improvement opportunities are everywhere – be it back office admin tasks, front office productivity, invoicing process, working capital management or offering new and innovative services. It is no surprise that margins in this industry are as low as 2-6%.

Apart from rota planning and invoicing most other organizational functions in the care sector are literally run on paper. Most newcomers in this industry are surprised to see tons and tons of paper lying everywhere. Buried in the paper are staff timesheets, care records, staff reviews, complains, audit reports etc. Paper not only adds a massive overhead, it also reduces organisation’s capability to react to the changes in the market environment. It takes heroic micromanagement to ensure these records are kept up to date, processes are being followed and all stakeholders engaged. However, leaders in most care organisations will accept that their service records are woefully inadequate; often risking the lives of individuals being looked after. Centralised, accessible and analysable service information is absolutely essential to start modernising this sector and it also is the key to unlocking the new opportunities that will emerge in near future.

New world – new opportunities:

No one can predict the future. However here are some fundamental trends that are shaping the care market. Providers serious about their future should take note.

Privately funded care:
As local authorities raise the bar for social care funding, more and more individuals will be funding their care themselves. To be successful in the private pay market care organisations have to become more ‘consumer’ centric. Next of kin are as much customers here as the service user. Apart from delivering great service, keeping customers engaged – sending notifications and updates after every visit – is going to be very important. Organisations looking to grow their private pay business need to think hard about the investments in systems and processes needed to deliver high quality services without significantly increasing their cost overheads.

Complex care
While the overall number of individuals receiving social care is decreasing, more money is being spent on the most vulnerable. The economics of keeping people of out of hospitals or discharging them earlier is well known. This is an opportunity especially for organisations willing to ‘upgrade’ from low value social care to higher value health care services.

Looking after individuals with complex needs brings its own set of challenges. There is a much greater level of scrutiny and care records tend to be exhaustive and critical to the service. It is also important to keep all stakeholders completely connected with real-time access of ‘what is going on’ with a package. A complex care environment needs organizational flexibility to adapt to the needs of the service. Information systems need to be flexible and should be able to handle the forms, business rules and role based access required to deliver a tailored service which is at the heart of complex care.

Low touch care
As people live longer, a number of them will be healthy enough to look after themselves with some reactive care when needed. This can be in the form of a phone or video link to provide companionship combined with the option to get in personal care whenever requested (within agreed parameters). This type of service can also be enhanced by installing a bunch of assistive devices spread all over the service user’s home. These devices would constantly collect data about the health and wellbeing of the individual without being intrusive. Information captured will be relayed back to a “hub” where the staff will be alerted if something is not right. This is a dramatic shift from the current model and if deployed correctly has the potential to unlock significant value by channeling resources towards the once with greatest need.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of future opportunities. However, no matter what new opportunities emerge one thing is clear – care providers have to become a lot more lean and efficient, create real-time connections with service in the community and evidence the outcomes and quality of services to the payers. They have to start looking beyond sending the right person at the right place and capturing time, to actually knowing what happened during service time. Organisations who can capture, share and market the latter will be the once well places to ride the massive wave coming their way!