Improving leadership culture, candidate perception of the NHS and retention of staff

Leadership, perception of the NHS as an employer of choice and the retention of its workforce are influenced and affected by each and every interaction that occurs daily across the service. We are living and working in an ‘experience era’ where people are increasingly keen to rate their feelings. Early technology platforms such as Amazon and Uber have always encouraged people to rate their purchases and experiences and this has led to an explosion in experience management programmes across all sectors and even the creation of the chief experience officer role, which now exists on many executive boards.

Candidate experience and workforce opinion has traditionally been addressed through employee engagement surveys, but these have typically been less prominent or appropriate in the flexible working and agency communities. There is also a view that the typical engagement survey approach is too time consuming and infrequent to be relevant to customer experience. The NHS now has an opportunity to implement an experience management programme to obtain actionable insights from the workforce.

Shining a light on every interaction and giving each employee in the workforce a platform from which to voice their opinion repeatedly will sharpen the focus on workplace experience leadership. A programme of this kind would collect and analyse feedback from both workers and candidates at all levels, pinpointing the clearest opportunities for improvement.

There are various methods of benchmarking experience from Net Promoter Score, Customer Satisfaction Score engagement or a combination of each, but regardless of the method, there will certainly be a clear correlation between scores and the level of workforce engagement, quality of leadership, retention of staff and, ultimately, patient care.

Simple, user-friendly surveys delivered in multiple languages to an employee’s smartphone at key touch points, combined with software that is rich with analytics functionality, will provide deep and meaningful insights and continuous improvement.

Acacium Group are pioneering this approach in the healthcare sector, details of the approach can be found in Appendix 4 in our full report

Further insight

This is the last in a series of seven articles as part of our ‘NHS workforce provision in a new world’ report.