to be able to function properly benchmarking must be a team process. with a view to benchmarking the results will probably lead to changes in current practices. this means that the impact of change is palpable throughout the clinical team and potentially encompasses the entire department. as a result successful benchmarking requires a team process that understands and supports the possible changes that will occur in the future. the best practices we are willing to share are also important. without them benchmarking cant even begin. therefore benchmarking is not just for administrators. nurses and midwives play an important role at all levels in the leading role of health institutions in meeting national reference standards.