View Hull SCB procedures manual View Hull SCB procedures manual

8.1 Supervision Policy


In October 2017 this policy was rewritten. Links to documents to be used in support of the supervision process were added into the appendices.


  1. Statement of Purpose
  2. Definition of Supervision
  3. Supervision Triangle
  4. Reflective Discussion
  5. Individual Supervision
  6. Group Supervision
  7. Quality Assurance


1. Statement of Purpose

Hull Children and Family Services is committed to effective support and supervision for all social care staff. It is recognised that effective supervision is a key process in the delivery of a high quality service to service users, and an integral element of staff motivation and wellbeing, as well as a means of furthering staff development. Supervision is essential to effective safeguarding and should operate effectively at all levels with the overriding priority being the safety and welfare of children and young people who use the service.

‘Effective supervision is the cornerstone of safe social work practice. There is no substitute for it.’
(Laming, 2003)

This policy has been updated to reflect the changes to social work practice and the development of systemic practice in Hull, an approach and evidence base which has been embedded since 2014. One of the key elements of this approach has been the implementation of ‘Team’ working and the introduction of weekly Reflective Discussions; a reflective model for case supervision which includes all members of the Team. Reflective Discussions have become an integral part of the supervision process; they promote systemic practice and prioritise the principle of different perspectives and shared responsibility within a case supervision (and case management) context.

It is acknowledged, however, that as Reflective Discussions have evolved there have been increased levels of local variation with regard to the delivery of both individual supervision and Personal Development Plans (PDP). Although, any supervision framework will always require a level of flexibility, depending on role and working context, this difference needed to better understood in order to provide clarity regarding expectation of role across the service.

Importantly, this revision of a local supervision policy has been committed to a process of staff engagement; the ambition being to build on the strengths of current arrangements.

Due to this, and also Hull’s commitment to promoting the wellbeing of employee’s, as an integral strength in the safeguarding of Children and Young People, a consultation process, including colleagues from across the Children and Families Service was completed during March and April 2017, in order to produce a policy for Supervision that was both realistic in expectation and robust in the safeguarding of Children and Young People, and employee support.

2. Definition of Supervision

Supervision can be defined as:
An accountable process which supports, assures and develops the knowledge, skills and values of an individual, group or team. The purpose is to improve the quality of their work and achieve agreed outcomes.” (CWDC 2007 Providing Effective Supervision)

3. Supervision Triangle

The staff consultation was positive and provided opportunities for supervisors and supervisees to reflect on their own practice and examples of good practice from across the service. The key priority which came from the consultation was that of promoting a principle which retained a balance between group and individual supervision.

This policy outlines the principle of a ‘supervision triangle’, a framework intended to prioritise reflection, analysis and ultimately, focused and purposeful practice. For those involved, this policy should reflect the outcome of the consultation process and discussion, promoting a collective ambition to provide excellent supervision.

The Supervision Triangle includes three elements of supervision, these being:

  1. Reflective case supervision;
  2. Individual supervision;
  3. Group Supervision which is focused on Team and team development, promoting systemic practice and tools.

These three elements serve to promote the conditions which support systemic practice, as demonstrated in the diagram below.

supervision triangle

The three elements of Supervision will be explained individually and for all aspects, the active involvement of all who participate is essential. Effective supervision is always about relationships; the supervisor – supervisee relationship, the relationships between Team or team members. The best type of reflective supervision will model relationships which are trusting, challenging and goal orientated. In order to achieve this practice, individuals, teams and managers must prioritise space and time, embedding a culture which sees the benefits and provides the permission to support this way of working.

The Supervision Triangle has been designed to assist in achieving the inclusion of the Knowledge and Skills Statements. The Supervision Triangle will serve to align Case Supervision along with Systemic Practice, Personal Development and Individual Supervision.

It is acknowledged that in recent years, local practice and the application of systemic tools have achieved good practice. This policy is intended to promote the flexible application of systemic practice and tools (ultimately encouraging good and outstanding practice). Equally, this policy will provide clarity, setting out a set of local expectations and greater consistency, particularly regarding the requirement of individual supervision.

4. Reflective Discussion

A Reflective Discussion prioritises a principle of ‘shared responsibility’ for case supervision.

4.1 Frequency and Attendance

Reflective Discussions should take place on a weekly basis. The duration of the meeting is not determined but will generally last between two and three hours. Individual teams will decide the date and time of their meeting to best suit the functioning of the individual team. Teams will need to take into account any part-time staff, whose attendance should also be weekly.

Reflective Discussions should be attended by all team members and attendance should be prioritised every week. Absence from a Reflective Discussion should only occur in exceptional circumstances, for example; if the individual is on annual leave, sickness leave or attending court.

If an individual knows that s/he will not be present for the Reflective Discussion, such as having pre-arranged leave or a given court date, an update of any case due for discussion should be submitted to the Team Manager. The Team Manager will then decide whether the case supervision occurs on the proposed date in the absence of the worker, or the case supervision is planned for a subsequent week.

Clinician input into Reflective Discussions should be prioritised by all teams and it is expected that a Clinician attends a Teams Reflective Discussion at least once every six weeks.

4.2 Content

Although Reflective Discussions are primarily group focused case supervision, they also offer the opportunity for the whole team to come together, which is not always possible in the day to day running of the service. As such, Reflective Discussions offer the very important opportunity for individuals to routinely ‘check-in’ with each other and support each other.

This policy is not intended to be descriptive in the content regarding how a ‘check-in’ is approached, as this part of the process must always be experienced as relevant and authentic by those individuals in attendance. This priority for a ‘check- in’ to be authentic, means that this part of the discussion must be shaped by what is happening for individuals at that time. Some ideas:

  • How are you this week?
  • Do you want to share something good that has happened in ‘your’ life and/or work over the last week?
  • Can you share something new which you have learnt in the last week?
  • Can you reflect on your learning through something which has been challenging (personally and/or professionally)?
  • How can the team support you in a piece of work and/or with a dilemma?

All cases open to a team should be discussed and recorded (Reflective Case Discussion) within a three month period. For cases which present as more complex and/or high risk, a minimum of a monthly discussion should be planned in advance. Good practice would also encourage a brief ‘check in’ with each case on, at least, a fortnightly basis to ensure that practice is purposeful and that risks are routinely discussed.

In any given meeting and due to the time constraint of Reflective Discussions and the number of cases held within a team, it will not be possible for all cases to be discussed to the same level. Due to this, cases should be discussed at one of three levels.

The number of cases held within each team will be different and, as such, teams will be required to draw up their own 12 week agenda, to incorporate discussions for all cases within a 12 week period.

In any given week, cases will be discussed at one of the following levels:

4.3 Full case discussion / supervision

This is the most in-depth level of case discussion/supervision and will usually last for 30-40 minutes. A discussion will utilise a full genogram which should be easily seen by all. If information is missing from a genogram, such as father’s details, then it should be made clear what steps have been made to obtain this information and/or any future plans to try to obtain this information.

Discussions should identify where the child fits in the family and, where applicable, placement. Equally, other influences on the child/family such as friends; peers; school; community should be considered.

The framework for a case discussion / supervision, at this level is likely to include;

  • A genogram;
  • Strengthening Families Framework (Strengths, risks, grey areas, complicating factors);
  • Developing and testing a hypothesis;
  • The plan.

Some things to think about:

  • Is risk contained? Is risk reducing and/or increasing?
  • If a case has been discussed previously, has the hypothesis been tested and what was the outcome?
  • Is there any difference in opinion within the group – is there an alternative hypothesis?
  • What is the plan going forward and who needs to do what and when? What are the family goals? Is there a clear purpose to practice?
  • What systemic tools might support the case? How can systemic tools help the team / practitioner prepare for the next discussion with the family?

4.4 Intermediate case discussion / supervision

This is an intermediate level of case discussion/ supervision which would usually last between 15-30 minutes. At this level, discussion should also utilise a full genogram and where a case discussion has already taken place, an update on the progress made. A key area for discussion would be around the strengths and risks of the case; have they increased, reduced or changed since the last discussion?

4.5 Fortnightly Check in for all Cases

All cases should be the focus of a ‘check-in’ on at least a fortnightly basis. A check in will focus on the risk management arrangements, checking that visits and core groups are within timescales. The discussion will also highlight any reports required providing a brief update on the case.

4.6 Roles and Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of all team members to attend Reflective Discussions on a weekly basis. Although this policy does not seek to be prescriptive in nature, as this could potentially become a barrier to creative and reflective practice, there are a number of expectations that will be measured and which require consistency across the service. These are as follows:

  • The Team Manager will lead reflective discussions. If the Team Manager is not present or if the case being discussed is held by the Team Manager, then another Team member will facilitate the discussion;
  • A genogram will be brought to the Reflective Discussion for any full and intermediate discussions;
  • The latest Child’s Plan will be considered for all full and intermediate discussions;
  • A clinician should attend a Team’s Reflective Discussion, at least every six weeks. It is the responsibility of the team to arrange this with a clinician;
  • If it would be advantageous to invite an external person to the Reflective Discussion, the responsibility to do this will lie with the allocated Social Worker / Lead Worker;
  • The Team Coordinator will be responsible for recording the case discussion, including key points and actions. If the Team Coordinator is not present, then minutes should be taken by another team member or another Team Coordinator, seconded for the purpose of the meeting.

4.7 Recording

The recording of Reflective Discussions will be held on the child’s Liquidlogic record.

Areas covered should include:

  • Discussion;
  • Risks;
  • Safety;
  • Strengths;
  • Complicating Factors/Grey Areas;
  • Hypothesis, including how this will be tested;
  • Plan.

These headings provide the framework of the template on the Liquidlogic Reflective Discussion Record. This record also enables the inclusion of attachments, such as genograms.

5. Individual Supervision

Individual Supervision provides the opportunity to bring together organisational and individual objectives, including:

  • To achieve competence in providing the highest quality of service to those engaging with Children and Families Services;
  • To ensure accountable performance in the context of legislative and agency requirements, policies and procedures;
  • To provide continuing professional development and personal support;
  • To thank, motivate and provide feedback to practitioners and to support and respond to stressful events. This could include responding to and supporting individuals with personal difficulties and seeking appropriate support;
  • To monitor absence from work and any other management related functions such as conduct and performance and complaints.

The definition most widely used in social work theory and practice is Tony Morrison’s:

A process by which one worker is given responsibility by the organisation to work with another in order to meet certain organisational and personal objectives which together promote the best outcomes for service users.
(Morrison, 2005)

He goes on to outline four key interdependent functions of supervision:

  • Management – Ensuring competent/accountable practice and performance;
  • Development – Facilitating continuous professional development;
  • Support – Providing personal and emotional support to workers;
  • Mediation – Engaging the individual with the organisation.

In practice, good supervision flows between Morrison’s four functions.

Individual supervision should not focus solely on case work and/or case management issues. Although this will be an important part of the ‘management’ aspect of the discussion, the intention is to focus on the lead worker and not to duplicate the case supervision achieved through Reflective Discussions.

Individual Supervision should always aim to achieve a balance, considering the four different functions outlined in Morrison’s model.

Potentially difficult issues should be raised by either individual (Supervisor/Supervisee) at the earliest opportunity, to avoid issues escalating.

In support of individual supervision, informal supervision should still be available and prioritised as this supports decision-making in real time, can avoid delays for families and importantly, promotes effective teamworking.

5.1 Frequency and Attendance

The frequency of individual supervision will depend on whether you operate within a Team or team structure. Individuals based in a Team structure should receive individual supervision on a bi-monthly basis (in addition to weekly Team Reflective Discussions).

Those individuals who work within a team structure should receive individual supervision on a monthly basis, recognising that Team discussions may not happen.

The supervision requirements for Social Workers in Training and Newly Qualified Social Workers (NQSWs) are different. Social Workers in Training are required to have 1.5 hours of supervision per week. This may be a combination of both formal and informal supervision, although the ratio must be in favour of formal supervision. If individuals are practising in a Team structure, Reflective Discussions do not contribute for the purpose of achieving 1.5 hours of supervision each week.

For NQWSs undergoing their Assessed and Supported Year in Employment (ASYE) employee’s will receive weekly supervision for the first six weeks of employment, then fortnightly up to six months and monthly thereafter. If practising in a Team structure, Reflective Discussions do not count for the purpose of achieving the required levels of Individual Supervision.

Please note that in all cases, the frequency listed is the minimum, in any instance individual supervision may be required at a greater frequency. This will be agreed at an individual level and reflected in the Supervision Contract. All supervision sessions are likely to last between one and 2 hours.

If for whatever reason supervision has to be cancelled, it should be re-scheduled to take place within 5 working days. If the cancelation is due to sickness leave, then the session should be arranged to take place within 5 days of the individual’s return to work. In the event that the supervisor is absent from work for more than 2 weeks on unplanned leave, it is the responsibility of the supervisee to report to the supervisor’s line manager for alternative supervision arrangements to be made.

When arranging supervision, consideration should be given to time and place, aiming to eliminate possible interruptions wherever possible.

It will be the responsibility of the Group Managers to determine details of local supervision arrangements and to quality assure that supervision is taking place as set out in this policy.

5.2 Content

Individual Supervision provides a balance to the group supervision achieved through Reflective Discussions.

Importantly, Tony Morrison’s 4x4x4 model of supervision brings together the functions, stakeholders and the main processes involved in Supervision. In utilising the 4x4x4 model, this also ensures that the ‘Key Knowledge and Skills Statements’ for both Supervisor and Supervisee are met, as both present as consistent in approach.

Within the 4x4x4 model there are three layers which, when combined, create an excellent unabridged process for supervision and safeguarding. Each of these three layers has four individual components, each as valid and important as the next.

The three layers and their components are:

  • Functions of Supervision – Management, Development, Mediation and Support;
  • Reflective Supervision – Experience, Reflection, Analysis and Plans/Action;
  • Stakeholders – Service Users, Staff/supervisees, Organisation/Supervisors and Partners.

The Knowledge and Skills Statements for both Practice Supervisors and Approved Child and Family Practitioners align well with the 4x4x4 model as illustrated below.

It should be noted that the Practice Supervisors Knowledge and Skills fall into the ‘Functions of Supervision’ layer and the Organisation/Supervisors element of the Stakeholders layer. The Approved Child and Family Practitioners fall into the Reflective Supervision layer and the three remaining elements represent the Stakeholders layer.

The Model

Click here to view The Functions of Supervision Model.

5.3 Main Body

The main body of supervision should incorporate the 4x4x4 model and below are a series of examples, outlining how the knowledge and skills statements fit into this model.

The three layers of the 4x4x4 model are headed with the sub headings of their elements below. Below each element are several examples of the Knowledge and Skills statements that fit within the element.

5.3.1 Functions of Supervision

  • Management:
    • Establish and maintain a highly valued position of influence within the organisation, and be recognised for extensive knowledge and skill in the profession of child and family social work;
    • Lead by example, showing integrity, creativity, resilience and clarity of purpose;
    • Be accountable for ensuring the highest professional standards and professional conduct.
  • Development:
    • Gauge different learning styles and recognise when the role of the Practice Supervisor is to teach and when it would be more effective to draw on practitioners’ own knowledge;
    • Provide opportunities for staff to give and receive constructive feedback on performance. Recognise and commend hard work and excellent practice and build social workers’ confidence in their practice;
    • Challenge complacency with a commitment to continued improvement and confidently hold poor practice to account. Establish available capacity so that work is allocated appropriately across the staff group and ensure best use is made of resource, ability, interests and ambitions.
  • Mediation:
    • Build and develop influential and respectful partnerships between practitioners and partner agencies. Pay attention to different structures, pressures, priorities and levers for influencing and shaping the thinking of others;
    • Recognise the pattern the patterns of relationships between professionals, identifying where these are likely to compromise the welfare of families and the safety of children, taking immediate and corrective action;
    • Explain to practitioners the full legal, regulatory, procedural and performance framework within which they operate and be accountable for their work within it.
  • Support:
    • Create an ethos within which staff are motivated and supported to be ambitious on behalf of children and families;
    • Recognise how different relationships evoke different emotional responses, which impact on the effectiveness of social work practice and provide responsive, high quality individual supervision;
    • Identify emotional barriers affecting practice and recognise when to step in and proactively support individuals.
  • Experience:
    • Observe and talk to children in their environments- at home, at school, with parents, carers, friends and peers to help understand their physical and emotional world;
    • Assess the influence of cultural and social factors on child development, parenting styles, effect of loss, and development of resilience;
    • Use observational skills, genograms, ecomaps, chronologies and the contribution of other professionals.
  • Reflection:
    • Listen to views, wishes and feelings of children and families / carers.
    • Explore the extent to which behavioural and emotional development may also be a result of communication difficulties, ill health or disability.
    • Test multiple hypotheses.
  • Analysis - Support transitions, recognising impact of loss and change:
    • Hold an empathic position about the relationship between poverty and social deprivation, taking in to account child and family history and how this might affect engagement with services;
    • Challenge existing conclusions in the light of new evidence or practice reflection.
  • Plans and Action:
    • Take in to account long term effects;
    • Recognise and address resistance to change, ambivalent or selective co-operation and recognise when immediate help is required;
    • Make realistic, child centred plans which manage and reduce identified risks and meet the need of the child.

5.3.2 Stakeholders

  • Service Users:
    • Include children, families and professionals in assessment, planning and review;
    • Produce written case notes and reports, which are well argued, focused and jargon free;
    • Use professional curiosity and authority whilst maintaining a position of partnership, including all key family members, including fathers.
  • Staff / Supervisees:
    • Operate successfully within local and national systems;
    • Maintain personal and professional credibility through effective working relationships;
    • Reflect on emotional experience of working relationships with parents, carers and children, be conscious of personal triggers.
  • Organisation / Supervisors:
    • Help shape and influence an environment which enables excellent practice by setting high standards and motivating others to do the same;
    • Recognise, respect and value the expertise of practitioners and provide a practice framework, underpinned by theory and the best evidence, within which they can work effectively;
    • Used focused questioning with practitioners to clarify the direction of work, and identify whether practitioners need to adopt a more reflective and curious approach, or respond with greater pace and assertion.
  • Partners:
    • Secure access to services, negotiating and challenging other professionals and organisations to provide the help required;
    • Lead investigations of allegations of significant harm to children in consultation with other professionals;
    • Take in to account the complex relationship between professional ethics, the application of law and the impact of social policy on both.

Click here to see the Knowledge and skills statements for child and family social work.

5.4 Roles and Responsibilities

Supervision is the responsibility of both the supervisor and supervisee, below are list of the minimum expectations of both parties.

5.4.1 Responsibilities of the Supervisior

Undertake appropriate supervision training.

  • Ensure that supervision is booked well in advance and a room is booked;
  • Make direct contact with the supervisee should a supervision meeting need to be cancelled and arrange a further date to take place within 5 working days;
  • Ensure that all team members are aware that supervision is a private reflective space that should not be interrupted, unless for an immediate emergency;
  • Listen, explore, summarise, check out and challenge;
  • Prepare for supervision;
  • Ensure that the agenda is jointly agreed with the supervisee at the beginning of the supervision session;
  • Deal sensitively and confidentially with any personal information shared by the supervisee;
  • Ensure that supervision is a constructive process and that supervisees are supported and given feedback about their performance;
  • Ensure that decisions and actions agreed in regard to a child / young person are recorded on the service user’s case record;
  • Ensure that a supervision record is completed, agreed and signed by the supervisee;
  • Update Training Log to reflect any training that has been undertaken.

5.4.2 Responsibilities of the Supervisee

  • Make direct contact with the supervisor should a supervision meeting need to be cancelled and arrange a further date to take place within 5 working days;
  • Prepare for each meeting and identify issues which require attention;
  • Ensure that any actions from the previous supervision have been completed;
  • Be prepared to share thoughts and ideas and be open about what has gone well and what has been difficult;
  • Be prepared to reflect on, scrutinise and evaluate work that has been carried out, and to be challenged on practice;
  • Identify areas for development / training needs;
  • Maintain confidentiality within the process as appropriate;
  • Speak openly and honestly about the role, the service users and impact upon self.

5.5 Supervision Contract

A Supervision Contact should exist for all employees and must be signed by both Supervisor and Supervisee. The Supervision Contract is largely generic but does offer some space for additional information.

5.6 Recording

All individual supervisions will be recorded. When individual children or young people have been discussed, any decisions taken or actions agreed should be recorded by the Supervisor on the Child’s record in Liquidlogic.

All other recordings should be made on the supervisees Personal Supervision Record form. This completed form should be signed by both the Supervisor and the Supervisee as a correct record of the supervision session. If the record is made electronically then electronic signatures may be used. It is advised that the Supervision Record is completed within 5 working days of the supervision taking place.

In addition to the Supervision Record an individual’s Supervision Log and Training Log should be completed. These can be completed within the supervision session.

5.7 Storage and Retention of Supervision Records

The Supervisor should store records securely in a supervision file. The Key documents that should be kept in each Supervisee’s supervision file are:

  • Supervisee Personal Details;
  • Supervision Contract;
  • Supervision Records;
  • Supervision Log;
  • Training Log;
  • Job Description.

There are a number of other documents relating to employment which may be kept in the Supervision File. A list of these and other location information can be found in the Resources section of this manual.

The supervision file can be a paper file, stored securely in the building where the member of staff is located. Alternatively an electronic file may be used. Electronic supervision files should contain the same documents as paper files. The same principles of confidentiality apply to paper and electronic supervision records. The only persons that should have access to these files are the Supervisor, their line manager and the Supervisee, unless required for one of the purposes described in Section 5.8, Confidentiality.

If a member of staff moves to a different team within Hull Children and Young People’s Services, the supervision file will be transferred from the previous supervisor to the new supervisor. This file will then form a sub section within the new supervision file and should be entitled Previous Supervision and state the name of the previous supervisor.

If a member of staff leaves their employment with Hull Children and Young People’s Services the supervision file should be archived with Human Resources where it will be retained for 7 years after employment has ceased, following this time the file will be destroyed. The file should be stored with Human Resources within one month of the supervisee’s termination of employment, and should clearly state the date for destruction.

It is advised that supervisee’s store their own copies of supervision records securely.

5.8 Confidentiality

Although supervision is private, it is ultimately a management process; as such absolute confidentiality cannot be given. In essence the records that are created are the property of the organisation, not the individual.

There will be times / situations when a supervisor needs to discuss the content of supervision with their own line manager. In these cases the supervisee should be made aware that this is going to happen.

Supervisees should also be made aware that from time to time their supervision records may be accessible to others for purposes including:

  • Inspectors (i.e. Ofsted);
  • Workforce Development Staff (i.e. for audit and quality assurance);
  • Investigating Officers (i.e. for disciplinary investigation).

5.9 Resolving Difference

It is important that supervisees receive quality supervision and that developmental needs are identified and met. If a supervisee feels that this is not the case, then in the first instance a discussion should be held with the supervisor during which perceived difficulties should be shared. If for any reason the supervisee feels that they cannot approach their supervisor, then their alternative contact should be the line manager of the supervisor.

If initial discussions have been held between supervisee and supervisor and suitable solutions have not been found, then a further meeting should be held to also include the supervisor’s line manager. The line manager may achieve resolution through discussion or may decide to take other action such as observing a supervision session. It will be the responsibility of the supervisor’s line manager to ensure that any difficulties are satisfactory resolved.

6. Group Supervision

There are many benefits to be gained from group supervision including problem solving, peer group learning and giving and receiving strong feedback within a supportive setting. Systemic Practice requires a greater focus on ‘team’ and the importance of development and learning within a team, a Team, a service. Group Supervision will serve to promote trusting and challenging relationships, supported by a culture of continuous professional development and reflection.

6.1 Frequency and Attendance

Supporting Reflective Discussions and individual supervision, group supervision should take place at least twice a year. Group Supervision is the most flexible in terms of specific requirements. As such there are no expectations regarding content and/or composition of the group.

Group Supervision should be arranged in advance, allowing plenty of time for individuals to prioritise within the context of other diary commitments. As with the other key elements of supervision, group supervision should be prioritised and non-attendance should only be in exceptional circumstances. 

6.2 Content

One of the main priorities for group supervision is shared learning, and this should be the focus when planning sessions. Whatever the chosen content, the focus should be on strengthening systemic practice, current research and theory and sharing good practice and professional experiences.

It is advised that an agenda for the group supervision is provided in advance to all those who will be attending, this allowing all members to prepare where necessary to be fully involved in the process.

Below are several suggestions for teams to consider when planning for group supervision. This is not an exhaustive list and only intended to promote ideas across the service. 

6.3 Main Body

The structure of the Group Supervision might include the following framework:

  • The reasons why topic has been brought for discussion;
  • An overview or synopsis of the topic;
  • Consideration of how the session might impact in practice - the practitioner; family; child; organisation;
  • A summary of the learning and opportunities to take the work forward.

6.4 Roles and Responsibilities

Responsibility lies with all group members to attend Group Supervision and contribute to the discussion. During the initial Group Supervision session, decisions need to be made on ground rules, such as:

  • Room Layout;
  • Expected breaks;
  • How will agenda topics be identified?
  • Will there be a stable ‘chair’, or will this function rotate within the group;
  • Confidentiality;
  • Member expectations.

If at any point there are changes to the composition of a group, their agreement to the ground rules should be sought. If there are any contentious points then these should be discussed prior to commencing the session.

It is expected that all members of a group participate fully within the supervision session, this is essential to exploring the systemic way of working. It is accepted that for some individuals this may be an unsettling thought, and it is here that group dynamics and peer support are crucial. As with any discussion there may be differing views from participants, but this difference should promote pragmatic debate, not offence.

6.5 Recording

Unlike the recording of Reflective Discussions and Individual Supervision, it will be an individual’s responsibility to make their own recordings in relation to Group Supervision sessions. The template to use can be found in the Resources section of this manual.

Completion of the form is a straight forward process and can be completed manually or electronically. When completed, you can request that this be attached to your personal supervision file and/or keep a copy yourself. The information recorded will be of benefit to you should you be required to complete the HCPC Continuing Professional Development audit, in addition it will support self-analysis for future learning.

7. Quality Assurance

It is important that the expectations set out in this policy are followed. Quality assurance arrangements are that:

  • Every three months an audit will be completed outlining the frequency of supervision across the service, including individual supervision and reflective discussions;
  • An annual evaluation of the effectiveness of supervision arrangements will provide a more detailed and qualitative report, include individual and team feedback across the service.


Click here to view Appendix 1: Supervision Contract.

Click here to view Appendix 2: Personal Supervision Record.

Click here to view Appendix 3: Supervision Log.

Click here to view Appendix 4: Training Log.

Click here to view Appendix 5: Location of Supervision and Other Related Documents.

Click here to view Appendix 6: Group Supervision.

Click here to view Appendix 7: Quality Assurance.