Background Initial feedback from staff and volunteers indicated they wished to have their voices heard. Sharing the responsibility between all team members for communicating the message of hospice care appeared to be a new initiative to be explored. We predicted that opening up communication platforms to new perspectives would provide an insight into hospice care to local individuals and groups.
Aims To support the idea of a digital transformation within the hospice and encourage staff and volunteer participation. To encourage team members to collaborate in hospice communications, share their experiences directly and to participate in online conversations with external stakeholders.
Method Following face-to-face feedback from staff and collection of anecdotal evidence, we determined that staff and volunteers felt under-represented online and they wished to bust myths around their roles directly. We utilised short workshops to train staff and reduce barriers to entry for platforms, including 1–2–1 sessions. We tracked our success using Google Analytics and Twitter Analytics and gathered case studies, oral and written feedback from team members.
Results In 2016–2018 we grew Twitter followers around our whole team by 459% (2,207 to 12,298). In a year our retail team added 1800 followers on Twitter from 0 followers in 2017. In two years we added 70% more followers to our main account.
Conclusion This initiative demonstrates that sharing individual experiences is a contributing factor to recognising the importance of digital platforms within hospices for improving efficiency and transparency throughout the organisation. This approach lightened the burden in terms of finances and time for the Communications team while boosting frequency and variety of stories reported from diverse sources. It was an innovative way to maximise limited resources and build a digital culture within the hospice.
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