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RDF19 Poster Details

RDF19 Poster Detail

Poster Title 
Engagement and Awareness of Research SOPs in Newcastle: An Improvement Project


This project aims to understand research staff awareness and engagement with relevant Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) within The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (NuTH). Pilot work identified inconsistencies in the distribution process and organisation of SOPs. A Trust wide survey of all research staff was subsequently completed. The objective of the survey was to collect baseline data and identify possible areas for improvement with the overall goal to improve clarity and monitoring of processes.


The survey was distributed to all research staff within NuTH, over a 6 week period. A range of qualitative and quantitative question styles were used, focusing on current awareness, use, communication, recording and monitoring of SOPs. Additional questions were added to gather feedback and improvement suggestions for inclusion in possible outputs.

Over 90 responses have been received and initial results indicate a high awareness of research SOPs and how to access them. However, there were inconsistencies in the communication of new and updated SOPs, the way staff record their review and how this was monitored. There was clear uncertainty around which SOPs were relevant to which research roles and phases of the research life-cycle.

Current ideas for improvements include a staff working group, improved visual communication and updated reference documents (for recording review, communicating updates and awareness of role specific procedures). Additional work will explore ways to further embed SOPs within research culture, focusing on early contact and continuous engagement with staff.

Conclusion / Take home message

It is necessary to improve communication, distribution and monitoring of staff review of SOPs, mitigating the risk  of non-compliance in research. Ongoing work will increase staff engagement with the development of SOPs. Monitoring methods and embedding SOP reviews within the research culture is vital to ensure increased compliance.

  • UNSWORTH, Adam (Information Specialist: NuTH)
  • SPENCER, Thomas (RM&G Manager: NuTH)
The Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust