A new report published by the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) and the British Association of Social Workers (BASW), revealed that social workers want to engage with digital technology to enable relationship-based practice and improve the experiences of people who use services.
One of the main conclusions of the report is that social workers and ‘experts by experience’ (i.e. people who use services and carers) should drive the development and use of digital technology. In order to do that, employers, tech developers, policy makers and educators need to enable them to be genuinely and effectively involved.
Digital capabilities for social workers: stakeholders’ report is based on a literature review, survey, workshops and interviews, and is commissioned by HEE’s Building a Digital Ready Workforce programme.
The report also finds that critical reflection, understanding of ethics, and good decision-making skills are required across social work and need to be adapted to digital challenges. Social workers will encounter ethical dilemmas – for instance balancing the right of people using services to online privacy and confidentiality balanced against disclosing information in safeguarding.