3. Develop a supervision agreement

A supervision agreement will be negotiated between the supervisor and supervisee, using the Supervision agreement form. The agreement will state the frequency, length, location, content and process of supervision and a time when the agreement will be reviewed. It is recommended that six monthly reviews occur to update the agreement. Ensuring that supervision is beneficial is the shared responsibility of the supervisor and supervisee.

3.1 Types of supervision

Supervision can be provided in a number of ways:

  • formal scheduled supervision is planned and occurs on a one-to-one basis with a supervisor and a supervisee
  • unscheduled supervision is unplanned and occurs when the supervisee consults with the supervisor as questions arise, plans change or urgent decisions need to be made
  • direct supervision is where the supervisor observes and/or participates in direct service activities with the supervisee and gives feedback about the activity
  • group supervision is a group work process which provides opportunities for learning and the development of quality practice - group supervision is most productive when it is planned, structured and child-focussed
  • external supervision is provided by a person external to the department who is a competent supervisor with child protection and/or human services practice experience.

3.2 Frequency of supervision

The frequency of supervision will be based on the level of experience, skills and knowledge of the supervisee, and take into account the role and nature of the work the supervisee is undertaking.

The minimum requirement is one scheduled hour of supervision per fortnight. More frequent supervision is recommended for staff who are new to the department, or in circumstances where a manager or team leader considers it is required.

3.3 Structuring supervision times

Supervisors and supervisees work in a busy and stressful work environment. Supervision allows time to reflect on practice and to assess how well the supervisee is managing the work demands. Supervision sessions will be uninterrupted time and the supervisor will begin by focussing on how the supervisee is managing the work and assess whether the level of support being provided is adequate.