CASE STUDY
Engagement

The short version ? People are busy!

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Go where people are – engage them

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Client Story

Getting people to participate in consultation can be challenging when people are busy. When the topic is something outside of their responsibility or experience, it can be even more challenging. Stakeholders may not have the time to participate. This universal challenge was a particular problem for membership-based organisations that need to ensure they are representing the experiences and views of their members.

I was contracted to undertake policy research for a membership organisation, including consultation with key stakeholders and members representatives. They wanted to improve their consultation process to make it easier for members to participate and provide their views.  In the past, feedback had at times been quite general, rather than providing detailed inputs to help shape priorities and identify actionable activities. I developed a consultation framework to support the client’s consultation objectives that was also cognisant of the broader sector operating environment and the competing demands on members time.

It was my role to research and develop a suite of policy discussion papers on core policy issues. The papers summarised what was known, the organisation’s position and the contemporary policy challenges. Following endorsement of the process by the client, I developed a consultation questionnaire posing four key questions. The questionnaire and a set of papers was circulated to a range of organisational issues based sub-committees and the issue was added to the agenda for each subcommittee. Members could provide feedback through the minuting process, request a focus group, provide an email or via conversation.

More than 110 subcommittee members received the information and were invited to participate in the consultation process. I facilitated a focus group for one of the subcommittees, drew information from sub-committee action plans, consulted with a core group of regional providers at one of their regular meetings and gathered other feedback from a one off reference group. Inputs were also received via email and in conversation with client representatives.

The Client was pleased with the professionalism of the approach. The process provided the opportunity for a large number of member representatives to contribute directly to  sector policyand saw direct participation at rates higher than had previously been achieved. Nearly 40 people participated in consultation forums or provided feedback through other channels. The consultation process reflected the Client’s commitment to ensure the policy position reflected and articulated the concerns of members.

Strategic Support can help your organisation design and develop a consultation strategy as part of your commitment to good customer or staff engagement. Facilitation services are also available. Email info@strategicsupport.com.au

Getting people to participate in consultation can be challenging when people are busy. When the topic is something outside of their responsibility or experience, it can be even more challenging. . Stakeholders may not have the time to participate. This universal challenge was a particular problem for membership-based organisations that need to ensure they are representing the experiences and views of their members.

I was contracted to undertake policy research for a membership organisation, including consultation with key stakeholders and members representatives. They wanted to improve their consultation process to make it easier for members to participate and provide their views.  In the past, feedback had at times been quite general, rather than providing detailed inputs to help shape priorities and identify actionable activities. I developed a consultation framework to support the client’s consultation objectives that was also cognisant of the broader sector operating environment and the competing demands on members time.

It was my role to research and develop a suite of policy discussion papers on core policy issues. The papers summarised what was known, the organisation’s position and the contemporary policy challenges. Following endorsement of the process by the client, I developed a consultation questionnaire posing four key questions. The questionnaire and a set of papers was circulated to a range of organisational issues based sub-committees and the issue was added to the agenda for each subcommittee. Members could provide feedback through the minuting process, request a focus group, provide an email or via conversation.

More than 110 subcommittee members received the information and were invited to participate in the consultation process. I facilitated a focus group for one of the subcommittees, drew information from sub-committee action plans, consulted with a core group of regional providers at one of their regular meetings and gathered other feedback from a one off reference group. Inputs were also received via email and in conversation with client representatives.

The Client was pleased with the professionalism of the approach. The process provided the opportunity for a large number of member representatives to contribute directly to  sector policyand saw direct participation at rates higher than had previously been achieved. Nearly 40 people participated in consultation forums or provided feedback through other channels. The consultation process reflected the Client’s commitment to ensure the policy position reflected and articulated the concerns of members.

Strategic Support can help your organisation design and develop a consultation strategy as part of your commitment to good customer or staff engagement. Facilitation services are also available. Email info@strategicsupport.com.au

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