Illustration of pregnancy risk assessment form

Bringing transparency to an NHS Trust’s pregnancy risk assessments

In January 2021, Datatron orchestrated a complete overhaul of the Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s HR system. This major project provided their 30 sites with a streamlined, accessible, and compliant digital solution.

But this was only the start of their information management journey.

To springboard off the success of this project, the Trust asked Datatron to implement Therefore e-forms. As their first test case, they chose pregnancy risk assessments.

Here’s how we helped.

Assessment blind spots

Historically, the Trust’s pregnancy risk assessment process was very convoluted. Line managers conducted the conversations, completed the forms on paper, and then stored them on employee personnel records.

But this created a number of challenges, including:

  • Reduced transparency. The Trust found it difficult to determine how many pregnancy risk assessments were in the pipeline.
  • Lost files. Paper documents were all too easy to lose or misplace.
  • Lack of standardisation. When left up to individual managers, forms were often completed in differing formats.
  • Out-of-date information. It was hard to implement new layout changes and ensure accurate data collection with Word-based forms.

Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic only exacerbated these problems. It also increased the precautions needed to protect pregnant employees in patient-facing roles.

To combat these challenges, the process needed to change.

This is where Datatron stepped in.

Datatron’s step-by-step implementation

Working alongside the Trust’s HR and IT department, we followed a very meticulous process:

  1. First, we engaged with the Trust’s team to learn about their existing form, workflows and process. This helped us identify the purpose of these forms, as well as key dependencies.
  2. Then, we mocked up an initial e-form. This included bespoke branding to instil trust in users.
  3. A project test team, set up by the Trust, thoroughly trialled the e-form in a safe test environment.
  4. We amended the form based on the team’s feedback.
  5. Once the Trust were happy with the form, we launched it on 23rd February 2022.

We also offered post-implementation care to assure the form’s success after launch. Fortunately, there were very few issues.

‘We didn’t get a huge number of problems when we went live. I was expecting it to be painful, but it was surprisingly painless!’ - Dawn Temple-Scott, HR Workforce Planning and Automation Programme Manager at the Trust.

Traceable documents, assured compliance

The project took six months to complete. Now, the Northumbria Healthcare Trust operates a more transparent pregnancy risk assessment process.

With their new e-form, they enjoy:

  • Better clarity. These forms are easily accessible on the Trust’s intranet.
  • Automatic storage. There’s no need for manual uploading. Once an assessment is authorised, it’s uploaded to the HR file automatically.
  • Standardised assessments. Every form follows a set structure, all with trustworthy branding. Managers can also globally update the forms as health advice changes.
  • Regulatory compliance. The Trust can now effortlessly trace discussions around pregnancy risks and occupational health advice. This is essential for following legal regulations.
  • Actionable reminders. Managers must conduct risk assessments at various stages during and after an employee’s pregnancy. With their new system, managers receive reminders when a new assessment is due. More than this, once they complete a form, they’re directed to the action they need to take.
  • Zero lost files. The entire assessment process is held in the HR Case File ensuring no lost data or missed assessments.

During the undertaking, our team provided continuous support and expert consultation. This involved educating users on Therefore, recommending technical specifications and incorporating changing requirements.

Speaking of Datatron’s service, Dawn Temple-Scott says:

‘The relationship with Datatron has been really good throughout. They delivered what we wanted, they were flexible when we wanted to add things into the spec, and they supported us during the whole project. We never had to wait a week for someone to get back to us. There was usually a response by email or phone on the same day.’

Going forward: Finetuning the form

With thousands of employees to look after, the Northumbria Healthcare Trust recognises the importance of steadfast duty of care. Their new pregnancy risk assessment e-form allows them to trace discussions and agreements with ease. Thus, increasing the reliability of the process.

But, there’s still room for improvement.

Their next big requirement is to provide access to contract and trainee healthcare workers. These employees do not have personnel records but are still entitled to pregnancy risk assessments.

In the months to come, Datatron and the Trust will once again work together to build upon the system’s solid foundations.

If you’d like to see how the current e-form works in action, watch our webinar.

Download the case study


Back to Blog