Improving organisation performance through greater patient advocacy

A NHS Foundation Trust was in a vicious cycle of declining performance, continually shifting the burden from one year to the next. We took the Board along a journey of discovery and design to co-develop a strategy and simplify its transformation agenda to improve its performance, sustainably.

Growing demand and declining finances force the organisation to reimagine its future

The NHS Trust was a provider of acute services serving a population of 0.5 million. It was at a crossroad, facing an uncertain future and increased pressure from the regulator. Financial, operational and quality performance were deteriorating. Our client was making little progress with its complex change agenda and the wider health system reconfiguration with major decisions on hold. This was adversely impacting staff engagement and morale causing change fatigue.

Having attempted to resolve its challenges through the traditional methods, the Board realised a different approach and fresh perspective was required. It wanted to break the mould and build on the goodwill of staff and management to do what is best for the patients.

Looking for a strategy, they asked Strasys: how can we rethink our services and organisation model within the context of the wider health and social care system to better meet the needs of our patients and improve care?

Multidisciplinary approach to humanising healthcare and unlocking innovation

We setup a multidisciplinary team to work closely with the Trust Board and key staff over a period of four months on a carefully designed process of discovery and co-design. Using our Simplify.HumaniseTM framework we conducted an in-depth analysis of patients, their needs, wants, behaviours and determining the future burden of care. This enabled the organisation to reconnect with its patients, creating greater empathy and providing a common language. Building on this we then conducted a series of quantitative analysis and simulation modelling to diagnose and determine the drivers of performance and illustrating the causality between quality, finance and performance.

From our analysis it became apparent that the organisation needed to realign its portfolio of service and operating model to the changing needs of the population. Taking the consumer perspective, we co-developed the Trust’s strategy and developed a simplified transformation plan. This required difficult decisions but through the objective evidence base and our collaborative approach the Board was able to agree the new strategy and the changes with the commissioners and regulator.


By refocusing the organisation from operational efficiency to looking at the world from the patient’s perspective, we were able to create the ‘golden thread’ linking patient care to operational and financial efficiency. This enabled our client to get a much better understanding of the organisation, patients and discover the art of the possible, reinvigorating its staff to innovate and improve patient care.

“I cannot recommend Strasys highly enough! They are a breath of fresh air in a world of the big consultancies and the myriad of wannabes. Their very ‘human’ approach and ability to see the wood for the trees really helped us to make some critical strategic decisions with confidence.”

Chief Executive OfficerNHS Trust

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