3 Straightforward Tips to Make Your Special Guardianship Assessment Report Shorter

Special Guardianship Assessment Report More Than 40 pages? 3 Easy Tips to shorten your SGO Assessment Reports.

I have discussed Practice Directive 27A in full here, and you should read that first to understand what that means in full.

However, to summarise it is with regard to the length of your Special Guardianship assessment report and the previous blog gave some tips for making your report more concise yet robust.  

However, if you have completed your Special Guardianship assessment report, you have read and re-read it and tried to condense and summarise. But it is still too long.

You have crossed out as many irrelevant sections as you can.

But still it is no shorter.

No matter how you have tried, you cannot see how you are going to get it down to the 40 page requirement.

special guardianship report

Let me share with you 3 things I do to get the length of the report down.  

3 Tips to Make Your Special Guardianship Assessment (SGO) Report Shorter

1. Ask a colleague to review your SGO Report

You could ask a colleague to cast their eye over the special guardianship report, to see if there is anything that can be removed.

Sometimes when you have been writing a report, you get too close to the subject matter.

You think everything is important.

Afterall, you wrote it, why wouldn’t you.

Therefore, it can be difficult to decide what stays and what goes.

Asking for someone else’s viewpoint is an important part of the Quality Assurance (QA) process.

2. Put your Special Guardianship Report away, before reviewing it

A tip I learnt from my creative writing, is to put away any writing. That is once I think it is completed. This can be for a couple of days, but ideally a week.

But I am being realistic here!!.

I know what the life of a social worker is like.

Let’s be realistic, you are probably writing the Special Guardianship (SGO) report today and it is due filing tomorrow right! 

If so, then unfortunately, this is not going to help you. But if you have the luxury of at least 24 hours, a few days or maybe even a week, then do this.

Put the special guardianship assessment report away for at least that length of time.  

Don’t think of it for a few days.

Just get on with writing your other reports.

Are you thinking of it? Stop!!

I know it is probably burning through you and you want to look at it and get it done but trust me.

In 24 hours time, take out that special guardianship assessment and start to read it. You will firstly, spot grammar and punctuation errors which you didn’t see before.

Secondly, you may also come across parts of that special guardianship report which have been repeated or aren’t needed or could be phrased much better.

These things become much clearer when you do this simple thing of giving yourself the space.

assessment of special guardian report

3. Give your SGO report sufficient time to allow the Quality Assurance (Q & A) process.

If you have no choice, but to hand a larger than 40 page report to your manager, then sometimes this method can work too.

I’m not saying your manager will be happy, especially if they don’t have a lot of time to read a large special guardianship report, but a fresh pair of eyes will spot things you didn’t.

I know when I have quality assured reports about special guardianship, there are large chunks which really say nothing and could be scrapped.

Large areas that are repeated in other areas of the SGO report. In these cases, refer the reader to the part of the special guardianship assessment report, rather than repeat it all again. For example, if you have talked about the health, rather than repeat this once again. You could say, this has been discussed in the health section or please refer to the health section for further information.

This will do wonders in making the special guardianship assessment report flow much better and also in making your report much more concise.

If all else fails and you still have a large special guardianship report with more than 40 pages, then just know that these skills take time and practice to refine.

sgo assessment guide

For your next special guardianship report, challenge yourself to reduce this by a set number of pages. Then the next time by that much more, until you are able to confidently produce special guardianship reports that meet these requirements. But which are still robust and analytical.

If you have any other tips you can provide, then please feel free to share in the comments below.

Special Guardianship Info – Giving SGO a voice.

Special Guardianship Info –  Giving SGO a Voice