Establishing Continuous Improvement
The C3Perform approach encourages continuous improvement. The C3Perform tools are designed to help you to embed an approach to improvement so that it becomes a seamless part of the way you manage your organisation. Although a conscious effort at first, the process should soon become second nature and be integrated in your normal every day processes.
Tips to help establish improvement processes
• Action Plans for improvement should be living documents and contribute to creating a culture of learning and improvement. Ensure yours evolves by identifying a Champion who has responsibility for it, who involves as many people as possible in implementing it.
• Establish a schedule for reviewing your plans that fits with your decision making and strategic planning cycle. Don’t forget to review and enhance your performance improvement process.
• Agree a Performance Improvement Policy detailing a process for performance improvement and committing to it. See template on page 60. Communicate this policy to staff and stakeholders and refer to it in plans and funding applications.
• Communicate performance improvements to buyers, investors and funders and work in partnership with them to increase access to finance and funding for performance improvement work. Remember to use evidence identified through self-assessment to celebrate your strengths and demonstrate achievements.
• Remember to communicate achievements and celebrate success with staff, volunteers and stakeholders involved in the process to keep them involved and morale high. Make sure the process is enjoyable and tasks achievable so that everyone remains involved.
Performance Improvement Policy and Template
If your organisation has adopted a performance improvement framework, you may find that a policy helps you to establish an implementation plan and stick to it. A performance improvement policy demonstrates your commitment to key people both inside and outside your organisation including staff and volunteers, buyers and investors.
A performance improvement policy should describe how you intend to implement a performance improvement framework or system. You may have selected a self-assessment framework like C3Perform, a system developed by the organisation itself, or an externally validated framework like PQASSO or Investors in People.
The performance improvement policy template is intended to provide guidance in developing a performance improvement policy for your organisation. It is based on using C3Perform tools but it is easy to amend therefore applicable to other performance improvement systems. Each organisation will want to develop their policy in line with their aims, objectives, organisational culture, processes and performance improvement methods.
A performance improvement policy does not have to be long. In many ways, the shorter and simpler it is, the more accessible it becomes. It is important to consider how to make use of this policy so that is effectively communicates what you want to communicate and to whom. For example you could:
- Display it in a public place at your premises
- Include it in funding applications
- Add it as an appendix to your business plan
- Include it in staff and volunteer handbooks.