PIE iAbacus licences Levels One and Two

 There will be two kinds of PIE iAbacus licence, in order to best reflect the work, and the degree of development of PIEs, in each particular agency or network. Here’s how that works.   These two kinds of licence provide for different kinds or ‘levels’ of assessment, which therefore we call Levels One and Two.

(NB: This language is careful to avoid any implication that one ‘level’ is more ‘proper’ or higher status than the other.)

Level One is intended for larger agencies or networks, and so operates – as does the existing Pizazz-on-paper - at the level of whole team, or collective assessment.

Level Two is intended for specific teams, and so operates – as the existing Pizazz-on-paper does not - at the level of individuals’ own views and assessment.

But they can be combined – ie: you can have a Level One plus one two, three or (usually) many more Level Two licences – within the same agency, to reflect the work of the agency, and the progress and ‘roll out’ of PIEs.

So they can be ‘bundled’ together in one contract with each agency, after discussions and agreements that I personally will conduct, and review –  at least initially.


How do they differ?

The essential difference – apart from the cost – is that in a Level One licence, it is the team as a whole that is designated as a single ‘user’. That is, the assessment data is in-put into the service’s PIE iAbacus on behalf of the team by one individual, as the ‘scribe’ for the whole team.

With a Level Two licence, by contrast, it is the individual staff member in a team that is the designated ‘user’; and it is their own individual views that are recorded.

Why have two levels?

This distinction is intended to cater for

  • the way that PIE approach in principle aims to support frontline, team-based development, and the Pizazz-on-paper deliberately fosters team discussion and assessment, with service development following from the self-assessment process
  • the fact that take up of the PIEs approach, let alone the Pizazz and PIE Abacus, is still often patchy, even within one large agency; but can and should be encouraged to grow and spread. The licence format and costs need to reflect that as constructively as possible.
  • the limited time that many if not most such frontline services have for staff/service development
  • the likelihood that there are nevertheless specialist workers who would value having their individual views to share, and in particular the flexibility that being ‘a user’ gives to be involved in other forums (see below)
  • the likelihood that middle and senior managers would also want their own individual views contributing to the agency overview of progress

For more on each, just follow the links.


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


Overall (condensed summary), see:

The PIE iAbacus – an on-line version of the Pizazz, HERE.


For applications in particular settings, see:

 The PIE iAbacus – in medium to large agencies, HERE.

The PIE iAbacus – in local practice networks, HERE.

The PIE iAbacus – in small and local services, HERE.

The PIE iAbacus – in research and communities of practice, HERE.

The PIE iAbacus – in service user-led assessments, HERE.

The PIE iAbacus – with services using PIEs1, HERE.



Levels One and Two: HERE

Costs and sustainability: HERE.

Use and terms of use: HERE.

Ambition and modesty: HERE

PIEs 1, 2 – and 3?: HERE

The origins of the PIE iAbacus: HERE.

Customising the PIE iAbacus: HERE