FAQ: Why is it called the PIE Abacus?

We refer to the online, digital version of the Pizazz as the PIEAbacus, because it uses software that was originally designed to help schools in the UK preparing for an inspection by OFSTED – the UK government’s external regulator of schools’ performance; and this schools software is called the iAbacus.

This software platform has now been adapted to suit the nature of PIEs, which do not have any external assessment body, nor any pre-ordained criteria, as schools inspections have. The principal changes have therefore been in the language used, the areas to focus on, and the measures of success; but also in the introduction of peer review as the final stage, replacing external assessment.

(For the process of adaptation work that the PIEs working party pursued, to develop first PIEs 2.0 and then the Pizazz format, see: PIEs 2.0 - the development process.)


For those wishing to have their services inspected and externally, officially assessed, we tend to recommend the UK Royal College of Psychiatrists''Enabling Environments' accreditation, as the closest comparable external assessment approach : HERE.

There is another accreditation now available, the Trauma Quality Mark, for trauma-Informed services; details: HERE

Particular sectors may, however, have their own sector-specific assessment frameworks and bodies, in which case any two such approaches may hopefully complement each other.

See also the PIElink's comments on approaches to evaluation : HERE

The simplest, most effective way to evaluate and improve your PIE from Daniel O'Brien on Vimeo.

PIElink pages

Approaches to evaluation : HERE


All PIE Abacus FAQs HERE


Library items

PIE Abacus - essential briefing for PIE leads' (and any others in comparable roles), HERE)

Weighing the costs and 'value added' of the PIE Abacus : HERE


The PIE Abacus - applications in particular settings:

The PIE Abacus – in medium to large agencies HERE

The PIE Abacus – in local practice networks : HERE

The PIE Abacus – in smaller 'stand alone' services HERE

The PIE Abacus – as a research tool : HERE

The PIE Abacus – in communities of practice : HERE

The PIE Abacus – in service user-led assessments : HERE

The PIE Abacus – with services using PIEs1 : HER


All PIE Abacus FAQs HERE