Lots of people and organisations talk about putting the consumer first. And yet, when one reads their business plans or quality assurance frameworks, it is very apparent that the consumer is frequently not really first, or even second! They perhaps get an honorary mention at eighth!
A recent Quality Outcomes Assurance Framework that we were asked to comment on had person centeredness fifth on the list of quality measures. They struggled to understand why we considered this to be so wrong!
At ubu we know that putting the consumer in the centre of everything that we do is not something that can be relegated to one section of a report, it is something that pervades everything; it cannot be distilled from the rest.
If we ask our consumers what must be the first thing that we consider in enabling you to live your life as you should, we might expect them to say our people, enablers. A significant part of what we do of course, is about getting the right support and enablers for our consumers, and ensuring that the infrastructure of ubu is lean and focused on doing that one thing; doing the very best for our consumers – doing what they would want us to do.
If being totally consumer-centric is ensuring that the consumer is visible in everything that we do, the golden thread through our organisation, then the first thing that is on our list to make this happen is our employees. Our consumers would want that to be the case, so we invest in our people as our consumers would want us to do.
Therefore when we are working with commissioners, completing Quality Assurance Frameworks or working through Procurement regimes, we are rightly proud of the fact that we truly maintain the all-pervading presence of our consumers in everything that we do; that our key to delivering that is in ensuring that we have a team that is wholly committed to that understanding.