24 / 2 / 2015 1.06pm
You will of course have received your own NHS Staff Survey results by now, but I wanted to drop you a quick note to set out the national picture so that you can see how you compare locally and share this with your senior team and board members.
This year’s results are not surprising given the increased pressure across the NHS and wider public sector, and staff completing the survey report some impact on their experience at work. Of the 29 key findings, 11 have shown improvement since 2013, 1 has remained the same, 15 have deteriorated and 2 cannot be compared due to changes in the questions.
The degree of movement varies between the findings and on some, although statistically significant, is still not great. For example there is a small fall in the percentage of staff reporting that they have had an appraisal from 84.32 to 84.07 per cent. There is an improvement in the percentage saying that this appraisal was well structured, but this is also small - up from 37.87 to 38.07 per cent.
There are some positive improvements in the perception of quality of care. For example 67 per cent of staff said they thought patient care was the top priority for their organisation, compared to 66 per cent in 2013. Over three quarters of staff reported that patient experience measures are collected in their organisation and 50 per cent said such feedback is used to improve patient care.
A new question on raising concerns shows that 68 per cent of staff would feel safe to raise a concern about unsafe clinical practice and 93 per cent would know how to do so.
There are however, some less positive trends on overall staff experience. There was a fall in the willingness of staff to recommend the NHS as a place to work, down from 58 to 56 per cent. There was an increase in the work pressure indicator from 3.06 to 3.09. The percentage of staff saying that they had suffered work-related stress in the last 12 months rose from 38.61 to 39.50 per cent.
Bullying and harassment remains an area of major concern with the percentage reporting bullying, harassment and abuse from colleagues rising from 23.20 to 23.68 per cent. In contrast, levels of violence from patients fell from 15.28 to 14.47 per cent.
You will also I'm sure want to consider the variation in findings within your organisations. The survey again shows a poorer reported experience for many staff, particularly BME colleagues. Reporting and addressing these issues will be a key requirement of the Workforce Race Equality Standard.
The key positive trend reflecting work you are undertaking to support staff is the improvement across all indicators in the perception of support from line managers. For example, the percentage reporting that they are happy with the support they get from their line manager rose from 65 to 68 per cent. As a result the overall key finding indicator on support from line managers rose from 3.66 to 3.68.
Support from line managers on health and wellbeing is stable but there has been a fall in the percentage saying that their organisation takes positive action, from 44 to 43 per cent.
Overall the levels of training of staff increased across most areas, including in the key areas of health and safety and equality and diversity
After three years of progress the staff engagement picture this year is more mixed. The percentage of staff reporting that they are feel able to make suggestions to improve the work of their department has remained stable at 74 per cent, although the key finding on ability to contribute toward improvement has fallen very slightly.
The increase in work pressures and other factors may have had an impact on overall staff motivation and satisfaction, which have both fallen. In turn, this had an impact on the overall staff engagement indicator, which has fallen slightly from 3.71 to 3.70. In the context of the level of pressure in the service and on staff, it is a testament to the resilience of leaders and their teams to have maintained this level of staff engagement. There is also a marked deterioration in staff satisfaction with their level of pay. This reinforces the importance of the very welcome proposed pay deal in the last month.
We will be publishing an infographic displaying some of these key measures later this week and it will be available on our website. We have also updated and refreshed our staff engagement pages, and there are practical tools and advice on our health and wellbeing pages. You may find all these useful when compiling action plans in response to your local survey results.
Later this week, the Health Service Journal will be starting work on its Best Places to Work initiative. We are partners with the HSJ in this initiative and you will be receiving an online survey to complete in the next day or so. This will be used together with your NHS Staff Survey results to determine who appears in the Best Place to Work list. It is more important than ever that we continue to recognise excellence in the NHS so please do complete and return the survey.
Finally, towards the end of this week, we are expecting the Secretary of State to publish the Department of Health commissioned report (The Lampard Inquiry) into the Jimmy Savile investigation. I will write to you again once this is available to summarise the key findings.
As ever, I would welcome any feedback that you may have on how we can support you in delivering your local staff survey action plans. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Chief Executive, NHS Employers