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Discover how framing supervision and management processes around a safeguarding mindset can build a positive and supportive working environment, crucial for providing safe and effective care, and driving service improvements within teams.

Prioritising time to supervise, manage and meet with staff to have supportive, reflective, and developmental values-based conversations is important. It helps you to:

  • identify any safeguarding or other concerns at an early stage before they escalate
  • support, develop and hold employees to account for their performance and conduct
  • accurately record supervision and performance management conversations so that the information can be appropriately shared and referred to other organisations if required.


Ways to apply a safeguarding mindset

Here's some tips on how to apply a safeguarding mindset to the supervision and management of staff.

  1. Put in place and communicate clear and up to date policies, procedures, standards and guidance on effective supervision and performance management of staff.
  2. Discuss performance, values and behaviours, wellbeing, safeguarding, and conduct with employees through a regular cycle of conversations throughout the year, not just at an annual performance appraisal.
  3. Train managers in how to carry out effective supervision, including how to identify and discuss safeguarding and conduct concerns.
  4. Support and develop managers and all staff to be able to have challenging, courageous, compassionate conversations which follows a values-based approach. Focus not just on what staff do but also how (i.e. their behaviour and attitude) they perform their role.
  5. Put in place regular supervision for all staff, at least once a month, either face to face or virtually. Where a risk assessment has identified risks at the recruitment or vetting stage, additional supervision should be put in place.
  6. Ensure managers spend time observing (in person or virtually) employees in their work, gathering evidence of their performance and conduct throughout the year, celebrating and recognising the good and addressing the poor performance.
  7. Encourage employees to openly reflect on their values, behaviours and conduct in supervision and performance management conversations, and to ask for support and guidance where needed.
  8. Record good quality notes from supervision meetings and one to ones, including any concerns discussed. Share them with the employee and store them in a confidential file.



Here are some resources to help you to supervise and manage staff, looking out for any challenges or concerns which need support or addressing.

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Pages 23-25 of this checklist will support you with supervision and management.

Managing people

Good leaders create a positive environment for their workforce, so they feel motivated and engaged in their role. We have resources to support you with managing people, including our Effective supervision guide.


Conversations about people performance

Managing the performance of your employees is essential to ensure that your team is delivering excellent services. The People Performance Management Toolkit offers practical support to help you develop the skills needed to deal with key management situations confidently and consistently.


The ability to be able to talk about issues is an integral part of effective line management and can be critical to managing performance. ACAS have produced a practical guide for line managers.