The following suggestions are from our members and we understand that everyone will have their own preferred ways of working. However, we hope that these practical tips prove useful!:

Starting the session

  • Agree on the process to start the session. Harley Therapy clients are sent your remote contact details and advised to make contact with you at the time of their session. 

Connection

  • Check that your video service is working and your internet connection is stable before each session. If your wifi connection is patchy you may want to make sure you are in the same room as your router or connect to the call using your mobile data network, if this is possible.
  • Have a plan B. Agree the process to follow should there be technological issues. For example, should an online call disconnect, will you contact a client by phone instead, etc.
  • Make sure you disconnect properly when the call is finished. If your call is online, make sure you have closed any browser windows and signed out correctly.
  • Speak as clearly as possible!

Confidentiality

  • Jointly agree to use a safe, quiet and private environment for each session.
  • Jointly agree to use headphones to protect privacy and confidentiality when meeting online (and to improve sound quality). 

Avoid distractions

  • Turn off notifications on your mobile phone/laptop/app during the session. 
  • Ensure that any other phones/alarms are switched off or unplugged.

Camera and lighting for video calls

  • Turn off your selfie view in video calls if you are distracted by your live feed on screen.
  • Experiment with lighting when using a webcam. Make sure that light is coming from in front of you (not behind you) and adjust your camera to the right height for your eye line.
  • Use as big a screen as possible. It will be easier on your eyes and allow you to see your client more clearly.

Comfort

  • Wireless headphones will allow you to sit further from your screen to be more comfortable.
  • Make sure your clock is in view.
  • It feels more natural the more you do it :)

Ethics

You can also find the BACP's "working online in the counselling professions" good practice fact sheet here.

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