News & Events

Updates about the MAX activities will be periodically posted on this page throughout the duration of the project.

135 REGISTERED FOR THE MAX TOOLKIT SO FAR! [16TH JUNE 2017]

The MAX project team are pleased to announce that 135 individuals have registered to use the MAX toolkit so far. Of these, 122 are from 86 local authorities (LAs) across England [see breakdown by LA type and region below]. A number of users come from other organisations, including NHS Digital and the Social Care Institute for Excellence.

ADULT SOCIAL CARE SURVEY EXPLORATORY DATA ANALYSIS (EDA) GUIDE NOW ONLINE [13TH MARCH 2017]

Our short guide to Exploring adult social care survey (ASCS) data is now online and shows you how focused descriptive analysis can serve as the first step in transforming your ASCS dataset into meaningful management information. In particular, by helping you to:

  • establish general trends in reported outcomes;
  • produce more accurate estimates of service impact;
  • develop detailed service-user profiles, and
  • identify areas of potential interest or concern that can guide further analysis.

This guide will be supplemented with blogs over the coming months.

Please note that you will need to be registered to use the MAX toolkit to access the guide and blogs.

CARERS SURVEY EXPLORATORY DATA ANALYSIS (EDA) GUIDE NOW ONLINE [13TH MARCH 2017]

Our short guide to Exploring PSS SACE data is now online and shows you how focused descriptive analysis can serve as the first step in transforming your PSS SACE into meaningful management information. In particular, by helping you to:

  • establish general trends in reported outcomes;
  • produce more accurate estimates of service impact;
  • develop detailed carer profiles, and
  • identify areas of potential interest or concern that can guide further analysis.

This guide will be supplemented with blogs over the coming months.

Please note that you will need to be registered to use the MAX toolkit to access the guide and blogs.

THANK YOU FOR ATTENDING THE MAX TOOLKIT WEBINARS [3RD DECEMBER 2016]

The MAX project team would like to thank all of the local authority (LA) toolkit users who attended the webinars. Over 55 users registered for the sessions and the feedback we have received so far has been really positive! The presentation slides will be added to the MAX toolkit later today.

Please note that you will need to be logged in to the MAX toolkit to access these.

MAX TOOLKIT WEBINARS [10TH OCTOBER 2016]

Want to learn more about how to use the MAX toolkit? the MAX project team are organising a series of webinars which will show local authority users of the MAX toolkit how to use the planning, analysis and reporting elements to maximise the relevance and value of adult social care (ASCS) and carers (PSS SACE) survey data for local performance improvement.

The webinars will focus primarily on the analysis tools and will be hosted on the 7th November and again on the 2nd December 2016. Each session lasts approximately 20 minutes and all are free to attend. Further information about these webinars can be found here.

LAUNCH OF MAX TOOLKIT [30TH JUNE 2016]

The MAX project team are pleased to announce that the MAX toolkit will be launched on the 30th June 2016. To maximise accessibility and flexibility, the MAX toolkit is provided in three different formats:

  • Online guides: PDF versions of the three main guides (planning, analysis and interpretation, and reporting) which contain live links to the associated tools, templates and resources provided in the MAX toolkit.
  • Downloadable guides and tools: PDF, word and excel versions of the individual guides, tools and templates that can be downloaded and / or printed.
  • Web-based survey strategy plan: a flexible survey strategy plan that enables users to identify the most appropriate strategies to implement at a given time point during the survey process to fulfil their objectives.

Two types of tools are included in the MAX toolkit:

  • Core tools (e.g. the ASCS and PSS SACE strategy vision) which are likely to be of value to the majority of LAs and may be used without modification; and
  • Optional tools which may help LAs to develop their own strategies and/or modify the core tools.

Both types of tools can be adapted by LA users to suit local needs and the resources available and may help LAs to build upon existing processes within their organisation (rather than implement new ones) to maximise the value of the time and resources devoted to the ASCS and PSS SACE data collection.

The MAX toolkit is free to use and will be made available via restricted access pages of the project website. Please contact the project team to find out more or to register at maxproject@nullkent.ac.uk.

MAX TOOLKIT CONSULTATIONS NOW COMPLETE [MAY 2016]

The MAX toolkit consultation has now finished. 40 local authority staff took part in this consultation and the MAX project team would like to thank them for their support and comments.

The feedback provided via the online survey was generally very positive and, where relevant, were used to make minor amendments to individual elements of the MAX toolkit. The MAX project team also made further changes to the toolkit to streamline the process – for example, by amalgamating the engagement guide into the planning guide – and aim to upload the final toolkit in June 2016.

REPORTING GUIDE AND TOOLS AVAILABLE FOR THE MAX TOOLKIT CONSULTATION [APRIL 2016]

The reporting elements of the MAX toolkit are now ready for review by those of you involved in the toolkit consultations.

The ASCS and PSS SACE reporting guide and associated tools has been developed in response to the reporting practices and challenges described by local authority (LA) staff during the initial fact-finding phase of the MAX project. These focus primarily on the description and display of quantitative information and draws on the recommendations made in the fields of data reporting and visualisation. Reporting tools include:

  • Communicating data with text, tables and charts: an overview of how text, tables and charts can be used to describe and display ASCS and PSS SACE data and the key messages from data analysis. Includes guidelines on selecting the most appropriate method for describing and displaying data, and examples drawn from the ASCS and PSS SACE.
  • Design rules for creating accessible tables: an overview of the general principles and rules of data table design and may help you to create accessible and understandable tables of ASCS and PSS SACE data.
  • Design rules for creating accessible charts: an overview of the general principles and rules of chart design (Part 1) and the most suitable charts for displaying data (Part 2). May help you to create accessible and understandable charts of ASCS and PSS SACE data.

A blog outlining the importance of ASCS and PSS SACE reports has also been posted on the restricted access pages of the website (please note that this is currently only available to those involved in the toolkit consultations).

It is not too late to take part in the online toolkit consultations. Please contact us at maxproject@nullkent.ac.uk to find out more.

NEW ANALYSIS TOOLS AVAILABLE FOR THE MAX TOOLKIT CONSULTATIONS [MARCH 2016]

Further tools have been added to the analysis and interpretation element of the MAX toolkit and are now ready for review by those of you involved in the toolkit consultations. These include:

ASCS and PSS SACE variable guide: these guides provide an overview of the variables included in the ASCS and PSS SACE datasets along with suggestions of how to analyse the data. These tools aim to provide analysts with a quick reference to the data available in the ASCS and PSS SACE datasets, background information on how the questionnaire items were developed and suggestions of how to further analyse the dataset to meet local information needs.

SCRQoL and Carer SCRQoL Tools: Excel spreadsheet tools that calculate the SCRQoL and Carer SCRQoL from information entered into the ASCS and PSS SACE data return files. As well as calculating SCRQoL or Carer SCRQoL scores, these spreadsheets also automatically summarise the data as tables and graphs. The spreadsheet tools also include examples of how to determine whether between groups differences in SCRQoL or Carer SCRQoL are statistically significant using t-tests and ANOVA (or the non-parametric equivalent tests).   The tools also calculate ‘adjusted’ SCRQoL and Carer SCRQoL scores based on research conducted as part of the ‘Identifying the Impact of Adult Social Care’ study. These adjusted scores represent the impact or effect of services on quality of life to the exclusion of the influence of other non-social-care-related factors (e.g. health, age or other individual characteristics). This adjusted score allows for a fairer comparison between local authorities/regions or over time.

Revised version of the cross-tabulation and Chi square tool: Excel spreadsheet tools that enable you to run cross-tabulations of ASCS or PSS SACE data, as well as to run Chi square tests to determine whether observed differences by group are statistically significant.

A blog that introduces the analysis element with the Q&A responses to common questions that have arisen during the consultation has also been posted on the restricted access pages of the website.

It is not too late to take part in the online toolkit consultations. We have extended the consultations until the end of April so please email us at maxproject@nullkent.ac.uk to find out more about getting involved.

NEW TOOLS AVAILABLE FOR THE MAX TOOLKIT CONSULTATION [JANUARY 2016]

We are pleased to announce that drafts of the following toolkit elements are now available online:

ASCS promotional presentation: this short presentation was developed in response to engagement difficulties reported by LA analysts and survey administrators during earlier fact-finding activities and aims to encourage potential consumers of ASCS data (e.g. commissioners, managers) to engage with the survey. The feedback you provide about this tool will be used to develop a draft promotional presentation for the carers survey.

Guide to conducting a consultation with potential ‘consumers’ of ASCS and PSS SACE data: this guide aims to help LA analysts and survey administrators to initiate and conduct a consultation or series of consultations with potential ‘consumers’ of survey data to identify and prioritise local information needs, and establish the most appropriate strategies for fulfilling them. The guide is accompanied by a consultation template and suggestions for covering emails to enable users to conduct part or all of their consultation via email.

These tools can be accessed by LA collaborators involved in the MAX toolkit consultations. Please contact the MAX project team at maxproject@nullkent.ac.uk to find out more about getting involved.