SOPC: Our Work

Our work

The Services for Older People Committee, or SOPC for short, has 4 key principles that underpin our work.

  1. To develop and champion quality drive, person centred services across the Network
  2. To ensure service design is based on an understanding of the needs of older people
  3. To support the sustainability and growth of the local Age UKs
  4. To promote and champion a culture of knowledge transfer across the Network

In our capacity as experienced providers of services for older people, and as representatives of local Age UKs across the Network, we work closely with Age UK to help inform and support service transformation and the promotion of continuous service improvement to ensure a positive impact for the older people who rely on our services.

We advise, co-develop and support decision-making using our individual and collective understanding of how services work in practice and our knowledge of the needs and unmet needs of older people. For more information, check out our Terms of Reference.

Click on the links below or scroll down to find out more about the SOPC.

What we do

  • Ensure the voice of older people are within all programmes of work, including restricted programmes
  • Use data and analytics to inform and improve design of services.
  • Contribute to and champion the development of a quality assurance framework and continuous improvement across all services.  
  • Advise on workforce and volunteering training and development to ensure safe, effective, and person-centred service delivery.
  • Advise on future I&A strategy including supporting the development of new approaches; and income generation to enable sustainability.  
  • Identify opportunities to optimise virtual service offerings to minimise costs, support continued remote working and prepare for future CV19 disruption.
  • Advise on and support development of infrastructure programmes intended to improve the quality of back office system and transform operating models to deliver efficient services.
  • Facilitate purposeful communication between the Network and Age UK to ensure transparency of the Committee’s proactive involvement and role in supporting Age UK development, ensuring Network considerations and brand partner perspective.  
  • Play a proactive and strategic role in supporting the Network Development Programme (NDP) objectives, specifically those linked to service development and delivery.

Current areas of focus and advisement

Quality Standards

We have supported the scoping and development of quality expectations of the many and various services delivered across the Network. As part of this work, the SOPC has co- develop a Services Charter outlining a set of service quality commitments and principles that all members of the network could potentially sign up to and is advising in the development of a Quality Assurance Framework (QAF) for the network. The aim of the QAF is to provide partners with a system that would enable them to monitor and measure real time quality data about their services and hold it all in one place. We also think it could help in co-ordinating our various strands of work on quality and provide a way for partners to gather data required for the CQS and IAQP too. Within these work areas, the SOPC is also providing advisory capacity on workforce and volunteer recruitment, retention, skills, training and development.

Service development communities

We’ve been working with Age UK to create of a number of Service Development Groups and their associated Communities of Interests which bring together local Age UKs from across the network to explore the recovery and remodelling of a number of services, including I&A, Footcare, Day Opportunities, Digital Inclusion and Home Support.

Check out the newly developed specifications to support the delivery of safe quality Foot Care and Community Hub Services.

Data insights

We have been working with Age UK colleagues to define key questions related to services for inclusion in surveys that further our insight and understanding about the needs and preferences of older people, particularly those who are under-represented or seldom heard in the development and design of services. These insights are being used to consider service adjustments and improvements or even new market opportunities for local Age UKs.

Shared services and infrastructure

We are providing advisory capacity to the Network Infrastructure Programme, working with its Steering Group to consider the benefits and improvements to back-office systems and shared service provision to support the delivery of services to older people in a high quality, effective, efficient, and sustainable manner.

Strategic engagement with Network Development Programme Board

We are maintaining strong links with the Network Development Programme Board and other groups that have specific responsibilities and workplans in relation to future Network plans, and with a specific focus on areas of the future strategy and partnership agreement that address the delivery of services to older people by local Age UKs, individually or collectively as part of the Age Family.

Contact Us

Got a question about the Services for Older People Committee? Please get in touch at: SOPC@ageuk.org.uk


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