The Black Dog Institute

Enhancing mental health research impact: Black Dog Institute’s Research Translation Framework

Health Services
  • Business analysis
  • Project Management

With their vision for a mentally healthier world, Black Dog Institute works to put new mental health treatment, education and digital services into the hands of the people who need them most. For the past 3 years, Escient has proudly partnered with BDI to advance their mission in mental health research, as well as to foster a mentally healthy workplace that prioritises the wellbeing of our teams across Australia.

For this engagement, Escient collaborated with the Black Dog Institute to develop their Research Translation Framework (RTF), a crucial tool that aligns research activities with the institute’s goal to improve mental health outcomes. This framework ensures research projects are efficiently supported and resourced from initial ideas to practical application.

The approach

    Gathering insights

    Our work began by collecting detailed information from a wide range of stakeholders, including researchers, IT developers, and end users, to fully understand current practices and integrate them into the RTF. This effort led to the creation of a comprehensive process flow, mapping out the entire lifecycle of the RTF and making each step clear and actionable.

    Simplifying the complex

    In collaboration we developed custom documentation to simplify complex concepts into understandable materials. Through process mapping, we pinpointed essential steps and dependencies within the RTF, leveraging our expertise to adapt and respond to the project’s needs effectively.

    Stakeholder workshops

    Our role also extended to assisting with several workshops, including a significant all-day event, to ensure all departments within the Black Dog Institute could contribute to and understand the RTF’s implementation.

    The outcome

    With Escient’s assistance, the Black Dog Institute is now better equipped to deliver its services more effectively and efficiently. We provided a detailed process flow map and tailored documentation that captures the RTF process from start to finish.

    Our engagement assisted in clarifying each role and responsibility within the RTF, essential for managing a wide range of projects and studies. This clarity improved communication across the organisation and introduced a structured approach to monitoring progress.

    This partnership has brought the Black Dog Institute closer to achieving its mission of creating better mental health outcomes by bridging the gap between research and real-world application.

    “With Escient’s invaluable partnership, the Black Dog Institute has fortified its mission to foster a mentally healthier world. Through our collaborative efforts, we’ve crafted a Research Translation Framework that not only streamlines processes but also translates research into tangible outcomes, paving the way for improved mental health outcomes.”

    Craig Sawyer, Senior Strategic Program Manager, Black Dog Institute

    Escient & Black Dog Institute: Partnership in action

    In 2020, Escient and Black Dog Institute embarked on a three-year partnership of $200,000 in pro bono consulting support each year and an annual donation of $10,000.

    Our work aims to better position Black Dog Institute to ensure its world-class services are delivered effectively and efficiently to its community of users.

    In addition to the Research Translation Framework, Escient has helped Black Dog Institute establish an approach to program governance and a framework for their Project Management Office. This work aims to ensure the team derive maximum value from all technology investment and programs.

    Our partnership has been a highly valued proposition for the Escient team and has enabled them to contribute to social impact in meaningful ways that extend their professional talents and sense of personal achievement.

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