Making Alignment a Priority (MAP) Toolkit Launch Event by Caroline Timothy and Jane Roberts

The Making Alignment a Priority (MAP) toolkit has recently been migrated from a Wiki to a new WordPress site. Library staff from across the country were invited to attend the launch of the new- look MAP toolkit at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, over twenty delegates attended the event. In this post Caroline discusses the launch event, which took place in the morning and Jane reports on the workshop held in the afternoon for the volunteer content editors.

The Morning Session: The Launch Event for the MAP Toolkit was held in Birmingham as it was felt that this was a good central location for attendees to get to from across the country. Some of the presenters met at Birmingham New Street and got the train together to the hospital and this was good as it enabled us to talk through what we hoped to achieve on the day. When we arrived at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital we had time to chat to some of the delegates and to find out what they knew about the MAP Toolkit. The morning session was open to all registered participants and included a number of presentations, opportunities for discussion and practical application of some of the tools. People attending the event were encouraged to bring ideas along with them to start writing a case study on the day. The afternoon workshop was restricted to the 10 volunteer content editors and the Steering Group representatives.

After an introduction from Gil Young, the event started with a presentation by Tracey Pratchett. Tracey said that the day was intended to be interactive, to provide opportunities for networking, to generate ideas for the development of the toolkit and that she hoped that people would think about the application of toolkit resources to their practice. She then introduced the Steering Group members – Tracey, Victoria Treadway, Tracy Owen and Jane Roberts – and explained that there were a number of reasons why the toolkit was re-launched. One reason was that the Steering Group had to update the drivers content in light of the NHS restructure. Another was that the Steering Group had always talked about having a launch event but never got around to it! The content has also been transferred to a new platform – WordPress – and it was felt that a launch event would provide the opportunity to meet the new volunteer content editors and to get people involved from all over the country.

After a brief discussion about the background to the toolkit and the vision, Tracey welcomed the new content editors. As part of the launch, a number of people had volunteered to become content editors, and this was the first time that everyone could meet face to face. Tracey next looked at her own experience of using the toolkit and there was a useful slide on how to use the toolkit. We looked at the actual website and Tracey discussed different aspects of the site, including the drivers section. An important part of the day was ascertaining further drivers for the toolkit so the participants were asked to split into twos or threes and to consider what drivers affected them and were important to them. Everyone wrote their drivers on post-it notes and stuck them up on a flip chart and there were a lot of interesting drivers that emerged. The drivers are currently split into national, regional and local areas and it looks like this is an appropriate way to split the list.

The morning continued with a presentation by Jane Roberts about the project plan and case study templates. Jane explained that there are templates available in Word on the website for people to use and that there are completed examples to look at too. Jane said that you can use the templates to plan out a project or a piece of work. They are easy to fill in and once they are completed, they clearly identify the main drivers for that piece of work or project. The case study or completed project can then be used to demonstrate impact. It was noted that the guidance is very useful and that everyone should remember to take the guidance notes out when filling in the template. The templates are designed to be flexible and for guidance only so boxes can be taken out if they are not suitable. Jane then introduced me and said that I would present my case study on working with Public Health and a Clinical Commissioning Group. I completed the case study last year and attended this event so as to let the other participants know how useful the MAP toolkit can be. I discussed the benefits of the MAP toolkit, went through each of the case study headings, providing a description of the content of this case study, and concluded by looking at the next steps and sustainability – both for the work that I am doing and for using the MAP toolkit. Questions after the case study presentation were partly about the templates and partly about my post and it was really interesting for me to hear what questions people had about my post.

The next part of the morning’s events saw Tracy Owen introduce a workshop session. The participants were split into five groups, with Tracey, Jane, Tracy, Gil and I facilitating, and we all looked at how to complete a case study or a project plan. My group did not have a project that they wanted to look at immediately, but they said that they thought the toolkit and the templates were very useful and a great idea and that they would use the case study templates as a means to demonstrate impact when they returned to work. Tracey Pratchett then brought everyone back together in the main room where the event was being held and concluded the morning’s event.

There was a good chance to network during lunch and to share ideas and experiences. One of the participants has contacted me since the event as we had a discussion about our posts over lunch and we have subsequently shared ideas and best practice. This was only possible due to meeting at this event. We also had a look around the library at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and it was good to see how the library is laid out and resourced and to compare it to our own library services.

The Afternoon Session: The purpose of the afternoon session was to give the Steering Group a chance to meet the content editors and provide them with some training on how to add things to the new MAP toolkit on WordPress. Around a year ago the MAP Steering Group decided that in order to keep the toolkit updated we would need to recruit some volunteers. Volunteers were recruited from health libraries across the country using national mailing lists such as LIS-Medical. We currently have 10 volunteers who are spread across the country from Cleveland to Norfolk making it difficult to meet face to face. We have held a number of conference calls to discuss the role of the content editors and to distribute work. Tracey Pratchett also set up a mailing list specifically for the MAP project to give both the steering group and content editors a means of contacting each other easily. The overall role of the volunteer content editors is to identify and add new drivers to the MAP toolkit ensuring the resource is up-to-date.

The launch event in Birmingham was the first opportunity we had to meet the content editors in person. 5 content editors were able to attend on the day and it was nice to be able to put a face to name as we had all spoken on the phone during conference calls. We met in one of the Education Centre’s training rooms and aimed to run the afternoon session like a workshop, keeping it informal with plenty of opportunity for discussion and questions. Firstly we discussed the best way to horizon scan for new drivers which we could add to the toolkit. We then made sure all the content editors could log into the MAP WordPress website and were comfortable navigating around the site. The volunteers then had an opportunity to practice adding a driver to the blog. The workshop provided a good opportunity to discuss the best ways to identify and add drivers to the MAP toolkit and as a result the drivers section of the blog will now be regularly updated. The session was rounded up by Tracey Pratchett who thanked the volunteers for their time.

The launch event provided a fantastic opportunity to share best practice at a national level, network with other librarians outside of the North West and promote the MAP toolkit to a new audience. The overall feedback for the event was very positive several attendees commented that they would make use of the MAP toolkit in the future:

“A useful day, particularly in terms of meeting other people with similar job roles or with similar views regarding alignment of library strategy/planning with NHS policy / developments.”

“The project plan template will be useful in planning service development. The case study template will help with reporting.”

Next steps

  • The Steering Group will shortly be organising another Teleconference with the content editors to check how they are getting on.
  • Jane Roberts will be presenting at this year’s HLG conference in Oxford with one of the content editors from a Trust in Norfolk (The Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn NHS Trust). The presentation will focus on the challenges and benefits of collaborating with library and health professionals across the country to expand the MAP toolkit.
  • With the help of the content editors we will continue to add drivers to the toolkit and build up the content of the website.
  • If any LIHNN members have any project plans or case studies they’d like to share please get in touch with a member of the Steering Group, our contact details can be found on the MAP toolkit blog.

The new MAP toolkit can be found at-

You can also follow us on Twitter- @Map_toolkit

The Steering Group would like to thank Martin Elcock, Clinical Librarian at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust for providing the venue and organising the catering for the launch event.

Jane Roberts – Outreach Librarian
Trust Library and Information Resource Centre
Mayo Building
Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust
Stott Lane
M6 8HD
Tel: 0161 206 8411
Caroline TimothyPublic Health & Commissioning Librarian
Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Tel: 07766087054
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