Plan and test

Plan and test - reproduced from original image © NHS Photo Library

From the diagnosis phase of your project you will have identified areas to learn from that you already do well, and areas where there is scope for improvement. With some of the diagnostic techniques you will have also generated ideas for change and potential solutions. You can now plan your changes and how they will be tested.

This starts with identifying a clear purpose and measure of success and the actions that will deliver the purpose. You will then plan out how each individual cycle of change will be implemented and measured to identify which changes result in an improvement or not.

RCGP Quick guide: Model for improvement

The model for improvement ensures that you and your team are very clear and specific about what you want to improve and how you will know if you have been successful.

RCGP Quick guide: Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) approach

This RCGP Quick guide introduces the Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) approach, a technique that allows you to test out improvements in a controlled way so that change can occur gradually, with an awareness of unintended consequences.

RCGP Quick guide: Driver Diagrams

This RCGP Quick guide introduces driver diagrams, a tool to help you to organise your improvements in a logical way, so that everyone involved can see how the planned changes will lead to the desired improvement.

RCGP Quick guide: Gantt Charts

This RCGP Quick guide introduces Gantt charts, a tool that provides a visual representation of your project schedule which helps to identify a realistic timeframe for implementing a project.

RCGP Quick guide: Measurement and Analysis

This RCGP Quick guide explains how measurement and analysis can tell us what we need to improve, then, once we’ve started to make changes, it can tell us if our efforts are making a difference.

RCGP Quick guide: Run charts

This RCGP Quick guide introduces Run charts, a tool that allows practices to analyse data, with minimum use of statistical methods, and helps determine if an improvement has been made.

RCGP Quick guide: Communication Matrix

This RCGP Quick guide introduces the communication matrix, a systematic way of identifying members of the team and the themes they need to know in carrying out your improvement work.

RCGP Quick guide: Theory of Constraints and Flow

This RCGP Quick guide introduces the theory of constraints and flow, a methodology for identifying the most significant limiting factor – the constraint – which stands in the way of the organisation’s goal being met.