Lancaster University: Lancaster University plays key role in developing transformative ‘people strategy’ for NHS

A bespoke and detailed strategy has been launched for NHS human resources and organisational development practitioners – the first in the history of the organisation.

The future of NHS human resources and organisational development report sets out a vision for NHS people services through to 2030, and is the result of a major programme of work by EY, Lancaster University Management School and the CIPD which aimed to futureproof the organisation and ensure the best possible working experience for the NHS’ 1.4million-strong workforce.

Based on the latest academic research, the team collated the best ideas from NHS staff and leaders, and from wider practices across top global commercial and public sector to enable the NHS to deliver on its ambition set out in the People Plan: more people, working differently, in a compassionate and inclusive culture.

As part of the strategy unveiled to NHS staff members this week, a series of actions are outlined including a direction to NHS organisations to appoint a Chief People Officer or a Director of HR to each board across England. The NHS will also develop and implement a central curriculum of development opportunities, accredited to the CIPD, and organisations will begin to report on employee health and wellbeing with the same scrutiny and detail as their operational and financial performance.

Dr Anthony Hesketh from Lancaster University Management School was part of the programme team and helped compile the report. He said: “As the UK and Europe’s largest employer, our study aimed to cut through the complexity of such a vast organisation and the result is an in-depth strategy which sets out a pathway to achieve world-leading people practices for our NHS where all employees at all levels can thrive.

“The pandemic revealed how an underlying purpose can mobilise people to display incredible levels of commitment and performance to their roles – and now this strategy will ensure the NHS staff get the right levels of support and development for their own careers and wellbeing.”

NHS Chief People Officer, Prerana Issar said: “Throughout the pandemic, our NHS people professionals have demonstrated astonishing flexibility as they responded to the needs of NHS colleagues. The report builds on this great work, setting out for the first time our collective vision for the next ten years, including the People Plan commitments of more people, working differently, in a compassionate and inclusive culture.”

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