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Improving service quality and staff satisfaction through quantitative performance standards

Denise Torres, CSW, MSWAC, CCJS and Bobby Watts, MPH, MS. Care for the Homeless, 12 West 21st Street, 8th Fl., New York, NY 10010-6902, 212-366-4459, dtorres@cfhnyc.org

Implementing performance standards and productivity expectations in the field of social work is often seen as being in direct conflict with the values and orientation of the profession. How do front-line workers quantify work and performance without objectifying and devaluing the people they are committed to serving? As performance and evaluation becomes inextricably tied to funding, how do organizations measure client and program outcomes rather than process? Rather than being at odds with the core values of social work, performance standards is in keeping with the values of Social Justice, Integrity, and Competence, and a reflection of the person-in-environment approach.

This paper will discuss the lessons learned from implementing quantitative performance standards within necessarily flexible social service programs serving homeless persons with concomitant issues of HIV, mental illness, and/or substance use. Strategies developed to address step-wise problem solving, capacity building, stakeholder involvement, continuous feedback loops across all levels of the organization, as well as staff and client satisfaction will be discussed.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, the participant will be able to

Keywords: Performance Measures, HIV Interventions

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Performance Standards, Evidence-based Practices and SW Workplace

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA