The results of a national NHS survey has revealed that staff in Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield who work for South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust would recommend it as place to work or receive treatment, compared with similar organisations across the country. The Trust’s chief executive, Steven Michael, described this as, "What the Trust is always aiming for, providing services with all of us in mind, that any of us, our friends or family, would be happy to use."
As part of the National 2009 NHS Staff Survey, 150,000 NHS staff across the country gave their opinions. The results, published by the Care Quality Commission provide NHS trusts with the information they need to improve workplaces for staff. The NHS staff survey changed in 2008 to reflect pledges made to staff in the NHS Constitution to deliver high quality workplaces. NHS organisations are legally obliged to take account of the rights and pledges set out in the NHS Constitution.
The results for South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust were compared to similar organisations across the country and came out in the top 20% for the following areas:
- Recommendation of the Trust as a place to work or receive treatment – Staff were asked whether or not they thought care of service users was the Trust’s top priority, whether they would recommend the Trust as a place to work, and whether they would be happy with the standard of care if a friend or relative needed treatment. The score was statistically one of the highest in the country, compared to other similar organisations.
- Trust commitment to work life balance – Staff believe the Trust helps them find a good balance and statistically the work pressure felt by staff was also one of the best scores in the country.
- Working in a well structured team environment – 46% said they work in a small team that has clear objectives and meets regularly to discuss effectiveness and suggest improvements.
- Learning and development – 85% of staff said that they had received training, learning or development and this figure was highest amongst doctors, nurses and occupational therapists.
- Understanding their role and where it fits in – 53% of staff (an increase of 11% from last year) said that the Trust communicates clearly with staff and that they personally know how their role contributes.
- Job satisfaction and intention to leave – Staff were asked about recognition for good work, support from colleagues and how valued they feel. The Trust’s score was one of the highest in the country as well as the score for staff who were considering leaving their job.
- Equal opportunities for career progression – 93% of staff believe the Trust acts fairly regardless of ethnic background, gender, religion, sexual orientation, disability or age, including 100% of doctors, occupational therapists and staff in maintenance/ancillary roles.
The Trust’s scores were also deemed to better than average in the following areas:
- 83% of staff said they have an interesting job and feel supported by their immediate managers
- 75% of staff use flexible working options, an increase of 7% from last year’s survey
- 24% of staff say they have experienced harassment or abuse from patients/relatives, a decrease of 2% and better than the national average – as are staff perceptions of effective action from the Trust on this issue
- 72% of staff feel able to contribute to improvements at work, an increase of 4% above the national average
- 28% staff suffer from work-related stress, with the figure being highest amongst corporate services staff and clinical psychologists. This is lower than the national average.
However, there were some results that indicate a need for improvement, such as:
- 52% of staff at the Trust said they had agreed a personal development plan as part of their appraisal, although this has increased from 49% last year
- 61% of staff said they had been appraised in the previous 12 months
- 10% of staff had suffered a work related injury, though 89% of staff said they had received health and safety training – one of the best scores in the country
- 20% of staff felt pressure to attend work when feeling unwell, more than 19% national average
Speaking about the results of the survey, Alan Davis, Director of Human Resources and Workforce Development for the Trust said, "These results reflect the high value the Trust has for our skilled and dedicated workforce who diligently work to ensure high quality care for local people. The survey also shows areas where we need to improve and we are fully committed to do so. Our Trust is at the forefront of developing wellbeing initiatives for our staff, including leading on a new research project that looks at the link between staff wellbeing and quality of care. We will continue to take action that supports our staff to deliver their best potential – so that we can continue to help local people with mental health problems and learning disabilities to live life to the full."