Supporting our staff

A workplace that supports its staff to grow, train, develop, and achieve career ambitions is a beneficial one to all – and it’s exactly that nurturing environment we are proud to have at St Hugh’s Hospital.

With the backing of our parent organisation, the Healthcare Management Trust Charity, encouraging and backing staff who want to develop is essential to our ethos and workplace culture.

Not only does our workforce become more skilled and engaged, this commitment to training and development also creates a positive environment that’s open to any of our staff who would like to achieve further professional ambitions.

As ward manager Anna Cooper explains, staff development and care are core principles at St Hugh’s Hospital, for the benefit of workers and the hospital itself.

“We hold bi-weekly supervisions and annual appraisals, where each staff member’s development is discussed,” she says. “Naturally, some people are already very content in their roles and competent in them too, so training isn’t always necessary or desired, but if a colleague does express an interest in, for example, a new area or gaining a particular skill, then we discuss how we can move that forward, whether that’s extra training, a course, or another avenue. Development is available for everyone who would like it.

“In my role, I always think of the development of the ward or outpatients/pre-assessment when the training is discussed and considered. Staff are encouraged to research courses themselves and feed back to myself. I then discuss their development with my line manager, and we take it from there.

“There are obvious benefits to this approach. We get to develop our own staff and nurture them, which is very important to us. We provide funding through a bursary for, for instance, people wishing to complete a nursing degree, and the commitment we receive from them in return – to come back to St Hugh’s and work with us for a defined period – supports us with recruitment and retention.

“It’s very much a supportive ethos: if you want to progress professionally, or even retrain, then we do what we can to help that, and this is appreciated by those who take up the opportunity. A member of staff who recently completed some training was very pleased and grateful, just as the hospital is to them for being enthusiastic and committed to upgrading their skills – in turn, upgrading the skillset we have in the organisation overall.”

Anna has worked at St Hugh’s Hospital for three years. Before, she was a specialist practitioner within community nursing, and a community nurse. Earlier in her career, she worked in several different hospital wards, including surgical, vascular, spinal, ITU and HDU.

A registered nurse of 15 years, she recently completed a non-medical prescribing course with the aim of working towards a Master’s degree. She completed her specialist practitioner degree about five years ago, which included community prescribing.

“As you can see,” she says, “I’m well-placed to talk to colleagues about training and development, as I’ve experienced it myself.

“It takes personal commitment and enthusiasm to embark on any course, and while it’s not for everyone – and, of course, not everyone needs to do this – the rewards of additional training are great all-round.”

The Healthcare Management Trust Charity (HMT) is a charitable organisation supporting communities through care and treatment, research, and community support, and it promotes healthy lifestyles and education.

St Hugh’s Hospital is one of two hospitals in the HMT family, which also includes care homes and a consultancy.

“We believe that working for HMT should be rewarding and fulfilling for all the people in our organisation,” it says. “For that reason, we invest a great deal in recruitment, induction, and ongoing training. Programmes and procedures evolve through the collation of best practice from all our homes and hospitals to ensure that we can identify, employ, and retain the very best people.

Healthcare is a constantly evolving sector. To maintain high standards and respond to developments in care as well as changes in the  regulatory environment, all HMT staff receive ongoing training to continue to excel in their current role. Over and above this, we aspire to work with all staff to assist them in developing professionally to progress in their career, utilising the skills and the ethos that they have gained through working for HMT.

“Across all the different strands of our work, HMT is developing comprehensive career pathways that will enable people to continue to grow and develop throughout their career with us.”

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Coming soon… we chat to members of staff who have completed or are undergoing St Hugh’s Hospital-funded training.