Iriss business plan 2018-19

A summary

Our 2018/19 business plan supports the delivery of Social Services in Scotland: A shared vision and strategy 2015-2020.

Improving use of evidence

Social Services Vision and Strategy

We will continue to play an integral role in supporting the 'Improving use of evidence' strand of the vision and strategy 2015-2020, through involvement in the advisory group and a number of emerging projects/actions that result from the work.


We will commission seven concise, accessible and peer-reviewed evidence summaries on topics of interest to the social services workforce, drawing out implications for policy and practice.

The podcast will migrate to a new platform and at least 24 episodes will be published over the course of the year, including a new series - Freshly Squeezed - which focuses on 'squeezing' information and inspiration from key influencers in social services in Scotland. Episodes are produced to coincide with Iriss projects and events, such as Insights, as well as promote other key sector projects, policy, research and events.

Evidence Search and Summary Service

A standalone service for the social services workforce, it is being developed in line with Iriss strategies and values, reflective of the wider context and needs of the workforce. It is focusing on supporting the use of evidence in practice by providing: 

  • an evidence search and summary service for people working in social services across all sectors
  • training for the use of information retrieval and evaluation and application of evidence in practice

Improving digital skills

Online learning landscape

This year we will deliver online courses on topics including:

 1. Iriss HOW to find and use evidence in practice 
 2. Co-production 

National Social Services Search

Supporting the implementation of the Transformation of Digital Knowledge for Social Services, and building on the work in 2017-18, this service will provide a 'one-stop search' across a number of sector websites. The search is currently available across Iriss, SSSC and Care Inspectorate. 

Supporting improvement and innovation

Service user and carer involvement in social work education

This work aims to celebrate successes, reflect on the journey and share challenges and learning with others across the sector. We will promote and share a suite of digital case studies created over 2017/18.


This project is focused on embedding co-production methodology within social services delivery and design, and builds on a resource developed in 17/18.

New Care Standards

This project will build upon partnerships and methodology developed over the last year, to test and refine an understanding of the new care standards within two local areas, each within adult services. Throughout this process, learning will be captured and shared with the sector to inspire, inform and prompt new implementation.


Iriss’s successful ‘HOW to Communicate with impact’ workshops will run throughout Scotland, serving the social services workforce in all areas. There will be 12 Iriss organised sessions, inviting people to sign up.

The Emerging Workforce

A collaboration with university heads of social work, the College Development Network, SSSC, SWS and SASW to support the emergent / newly-qualified members of the social services workforce. It will involve the planning and delivery of national conferences.