Hey there folks…was part of a discussion recently on how to get started on Therap and how to train your staff once you are going.  Below is what we did and currently do here at OFI.

Identify Provider/Administrators – If you are not hiring someone to specifically take care of the ‘back side’ of the program, then it can be split into different responsibilities.  For example, you may want HR to take care of adding people and giving them roles and privileges.  You may want to give your managers access to reset passwords.  You may also want managers to have access to give privileges to staff?

Identify Superroles – It may help to have a workgroup sit down and look at all the options of who should have access to do what in Therap.  Bonnie had a link on her blog to look at the list of different roles.  I would recommend getting all your roles figured out and get staff the access they need before they walk in the door for training!

Identify Trainers – Your Provider/Administrators may be the right choice of people to train…then again they may not.  Decide who does a good job training and who is ‘computer-savvy’, and of course who can keep the atmosphere light and positive, and see if they would like to train.  Also, decide where you will be training.  Some agencies set up a training room, our agency rents a computer lab at the college.

Schedule Training – We set dates for each department to go live on Therap for each different ‘module’.  We broke it down into S-Comm/TLogs, GERs, ISPS, and Health Tracking.  We scheduled several hour training sessions for each ‘module’, and had staff sign up for the training.

GET RID OF THE PAPER! – On your scheduled day to go live with a portion of Therap, get the paper out!  If you leave paper behind, there is a larger chance staff will record on paper, and not in Therap!

Follow-Up – It is important that you provide some additional time with employees who may have questions or want a little help or just need a chance to ask a question after they have gone live on Therap!  Continue to be there for them!  We even continue to send S-Comm’s or provide addition training as thing evolve in Therap if we feel that it may be necessary.  We discuss Therap in our quarterly all staff meetings, and our yearly staff retreat to keep eveyone up to date!

NEW HIRES

Then comes the question of what to do with new-hires once your agency is live in Therap.  We schedule training one day a month, from 8:30-4:00.  It usually ends around 2:30 or 3:00, but that all depends on the computer skills of the people in the class.  All of our new employees are scheduled to attend the training during their first month of employment.  We discussed the option of leaving it to managers to train, but feel it is important that everyone hear the same information to keep all of our charting consistent.

I train our new employees not only on how to use the program, but what our expectations are in the program.  For example, not just how to enter a T-Log, but what should be included in a T-Log, and how they should be written respectfully, factually, etc.  We look at common mistakes made by staff during charting and identify how to correct them to hopefully ensure our new staff enter information correctly.

Different styles of learning – Remember, every learner learns differently!  I first demonstrate with everyone watching me, then I have them practice, then later I verbally quiz them and have the relate to me how to utilize the program.  This lets them learn by the different styles!  At the end of the class, each learner completes an excercise evaluating their skill in the program.

One Size Does Not Fit All – It is important to be flexible in your training to make sure each staff is reached!  Also, just because it works for our organization to train a certain way, it may not learn for yours.  Be patient and flexible, and you will succeed!!!

(P.S. – I have been typing this in a Therap class while the class works on their practice:-)