Staff Choice Awards 2018/19
Emerging Talent Award (Non-Clinical)

Tallulah Smith

Has been shortlisted for this award

Job title
Research Administrator 
Research and Development Department 

The nomination said...

Tallulah joined the team in October 2015 as a Research Apprentice through the Trust Apprenticeship scheme. In October 2016, she successfully applied for the role of Research Administrator in the department. Tallulah is responsible for undertaking all the general administrative tasks in the department, but has also self-developed new areas which are unique to her role, through her dedication and enthusiasm.

One of these main roles involves Tallulah managing the administration and collection of Service User and Carer Research Participant Feedback forms across the multiple offices of the research team. This work has meant that NSFT has significantly increased the number of feedback forms it returns across the teams.

She has also taken the initiative to review the feedback received from research participants to inform service improvement. This work has led to several initiatives identified by her alone to improve Research Participant experience for our service users and families. One example of this is Tallulah creating a Research Participation Certificate for our younger participants, in response to their feedback wanting an acknowledgement of their involvement.

Tallulah has also shown great skill and enthusiasm in her organisational skills. This has led to her supporting senior research staff in undertaking their research studies through setting up and maintaining a centralised and confidential electronic research studies filing system, which has helped the department to work more efficiently across all offices in Norfolk and Suffolk.

She also regularly reviews the electronic files to identify missing data and discrepancies, which has improved the quality of the data collected by the department and reduces the need to revisit or undertake further assessments, which means that the department can work much more efficiently than before. The electronic management system also means that appointments can be covered if staff are off sick or on leave, and she is able to single-handedly deal with queries from participants or other staff members.

She has also introduced a centralised procurement ordering system across the teams, which means that she can identify areas of duplication or waste within the department for Norfolk and Suffolk. This has meant that we have been able to reallocate items between offices to save money, or able to bulk purchase items at a reduction which can be distributed across all team members when required (eg. phlebotomy items).

Tallulah very much embodies togetherness and positivity in her work, through her enthusiasm to support all members of the team in different ways. She excels when she pushes her boundaries, and trying new things every day. I have never heard her say that a duty was not her job, or that she didn’t want to try something new.

In addition to the projects and work she has implemented above, she also has enormous creative flair, and this has led to her developing research diagrams and visual art for publications and other promotional materials, which is a huge asset to the Department and the Trust. One such work involved her creating a promotional poster for the Participant Feedback survey, which was published on the Regional Research Network’s website as an example of good practice to other Trusts.

She is thoroughly professional, and respectful when speaking to service users, carers, staff and external parties, and within a short period of time without any prior experience, has become a hugely valuable member of the team.

Tallulah has grown enormously in the time that she has been with us, and is now exploring other areas to develop her considerable potential and talents clinically in mental health, and we are arranging for shadowing opportunities for her in different professions.