Adding records & creating connections between records
Welcome back! Grab your coffee and let's get started!
Document Your Workflow (very important step, don't skip!)
It's important to know what exact steps are included in your program(s). Below are a few ways that we recommend for Admins to use when writing out your program's detailed workflow (sticky notes work too!)
- Process Mapping For Social Workers
- Process Mapping/Documenting Your Program Workflow with Spreadsheets
- Process Mapping with Sticky Notes
Get Records Into SAM
Today we'll be discussing how to get your child and family records into SAM. We'll also be adding a new case to show you what it looks like when someone comes back into your program for services. Lastly, we'll link the records together and show you how records are connected in SAM.
Adding A New Family Record
To add a family record in SAM, you can click on "Add Family" from the home screen (cover page), or click on the green family tab at the top then "Add Family."
From here, you'll be taken to the edit form to enter the family's information. You'll notice that we've provided you with pre-done drop down options for you to choose from in some of the fields such as "case program" and "case type". To customize those options for your program, your admin can click the small "edit" icon next to the field and change them.
Your admin will also be able to customize certain intake forms (public forms) such as your program's application for families. Public forms can populate these family records for you. (More instruction on customizing public forms can be found in the SAM admin training guides.)
After you click "save", you'll be taken back to the cover page for the family record where you can upload a photo of the family, or edit other items on the page one at a time.
Adding A Child Record
To add a child record, you would go through a similar process, but click "Add Child" on the home screen. If you click on the blue "child" tab before you add a child record, you'll see there are three options: add adoption child, add child and add foster child. When you click on these different "Add Child" buttons, you'll see that the fields included are a little different based on the type of program the child is in.
(Note: These options can be configured (customized) by your admin for your program. For example, if your program does not offer foster services, your admin can remove this option. Instructions will be given in our admin user guides.)
You'll notice that on the edit form for the child record, there is a prompt for the type of organization and person that can be added in this section under the boxes.
This refers to the person and organization records we discussed in the Overview guide. When you enter your referring agencies or placing authorities in your organization records, make sure the "Organization Type" is set to "Placing Authority" so that it shows up on the child form in the drop down menu.
In the person record, make sure your "Person Type" for social workers and case workers is set to "Case Worker" so they show up in this drop down menu.
The main difference between person records and client records is that clients can come back multiple times for your agency's services, so their records have cases.
There are a few important fields to make note of:
- Case program or type distinguishes the service provided to the client: Domestic adoption, Foster care, International adoption, etc.
- Case stage defines where the client is in your process: application, home study, placement, etc.
- Each stage should be defined by date parameters, a start and end date. The end of one stage may be the start of the next.
- Case navigation allows users to toggle between cases when a record is or has been served more than once such as a family that has multiple foster care placements.
- Important dates are shown as milestones on the cover page, and often correspond with the beginning or end of a case stage.
Adding a case to a family record:
To add a new case to a family record, make sure your family record is open and click on "Advanced Options" then "Add Case."
Adding new cases in child records:
In a child record, instead of application or home study, the case stage might be, for example, placements or adoptions. (These options can be customized by your admin for your program.)
To add a new case in the child record, you would click "Advanced Options" and "Add New Case" just as you would for family record. You'll notice that the options for editing the case details for the child are on the sidebar under case details.
Take some time to click through these items on the sidebar to get more familiar with what each includes. Remember, your SAM sidebar might look a little different depending on your program offerings.
When you enter person, organization, family, child, and case records into your SAM site, you'll start to see how the records connect. Some of the most common connections will be linking your team to the client’s case and adding placements or adoptions which connects the triad; families, children and birth parents.
To connect team members to the case, establish fields that identify that person's role, like Case Coordinator, Social worker or Home Study Writer. Click "Edit" to connect the team member’s person record.
For foster care or temporary placements, use Placement records to connect families and youth. For Adoptions, use Adoption records.
This is a great time to create some test records, putting into practice what we’ve shared to build muscle memory.
You did it! See you next time.