Department of Health

Activity 4.2: Analyse and interpret qualitative data

Key messages

  • Analyse focus group data to determine tasks that are suitable for your organisation.
  • Document findings to include in the final report.

Analyse focus group data to verify or adapt tasks from the allied health assistant (AHA) task list that are suitable for AHAs for your organisation.

You can also use the data to identify themes about culture, attitudes and barriers to the AHA workforce (including new roles and current skills in delegation). These themes can be addressed in the AHA workforce strategic plan (Element 5).

To analyse focus group data:

  • Group data into common themes.
  • Seek feedback, but be mindful that the level of consultation will depend on the timeframes of the project.
  • Consult with the steering committee and with staff (informally or in further focus groups) to home in on a particular theme. Seek clarification until the data grouping can inform the quantification survey in the context of the organisation.
  • Consult with managers to ratify tasks on the AHA task list.


  • Analyse qualitative data objectively. Declare any bias. Include all qualitative data in the analysis, including stand-alone data, or data that doesn’t seem to ‘fit’.
  • Identify, address and discuss barriers to increasing the AHA workforce or AHA use. This will facilitate discussion about opportunities for change. The success of the project relies on an increase in AHP confidence, in their ability to provide delegation and supervision and in AHA capacity to perform particular tasks.
  • Pages 32–38 of Health Workforce Australia’s The assistants and support workers: workforce flexibility to boost productivity – full report outline barriers and potential solutions to AHA use.

Activity outputs

  • AHA task list finalised.
  • Findings in relation to opportunities, barriers and solutions to change documented for inclusion in final report.

Reviewed 05 October 2015


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