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Definition: Turning evidence into action

You have found good quality evidence in answer to your research question, decided the evidence has direct bearing on your own service setting, and disseminated the evidence to key stakeholders. Now the task of actual implementation begins. This step of the toolkit is designed to help you to select, implement and evaluate a new practice or method. If you feel there may be organisational barriers to implementing change, you may find it useful to review the resources under Question 4 below.

Key Points: 
  • Implementation is the hardest aspect of getting research into practice.
  • Before acting on evidence, it is important to consider whether the change you are contemplating is in line with the strategic objectives of your organisation and/or the needs of service users.
  • The capacity to act on evidence is not only shaped by your capacity as an individual, but also by that of your organisation. Without organisational encouragement and resources, you will find it harder to turn evidence into positive outcomes. 
  • When evidence points to the need for a new practice, it is important that you develop an action plan to implement that new practice.
  • For success, both the new practice and its method of implementation need to be carefully thought through.

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