An approach to addressing staff survey results


14 / 05 / 2009

The trust has set up a staff survey working group and has put together an overall action plan to deal with areas where they scored worse. Each division in the trust has taken responsibility for producing detailed plans to address their respective areas and reports their progress to the working group on a regular basis.

  • The organisation
  • SHA area
  • What we did and why
  • How we did it
  • Results and next steps
  • Further information and contact details
  • The organisation

    The Christie NHS Foundation Trust is based in Manchester and serves a population of 3.2 million across Greater Manchester and Cheshire.

    As a national specialist around 15 per cent of patients are referred from across the country. It is the largest single cancer site in Europe treating over 40,000 patients a year. 

    The Christie became a foundation trust in April 2007 and was rated fourth best hospital in the country in the 2008 national patient survey.  It employs 2,500 staff, 320 volunteers and there are 12,000 public members. 

    SHA area

    North West

    What we did and why

    To address the results of the 2008 staff survey, an action plan was put together (see below) to deal with areas where they: 

    • scored significantly worse

    • scored worse than average

    • scores has worsened significantly from the previous year.

    The generic plan was put together by the HR department.  Each division then produced a detailed plan to implement their part of the overall plan.  This approach was chosen as the trust:

    • wanted each division to take responsibility for their own areas

    • wanted to bring the division actions together to share and encourage collaborative working and best practice

    • believes that discussing divisional actions plans can encourage new ideas and ways to improve the staff survey action plan.

    How we did it?

    Setting up a working group

    A staff survey working group was set up, made up of a number of nominated representatives from each division as well as staff side.  The working group meets every four weeks and is chaired by the head of HR.  The group:
    • ensures that focus is kept on all aspects of the staff survey
    • monitors the actions that the divisions have put in place to improve results.

    Meetings focus on feeding back on the divisional plans, brainstorming ideas and looking at how ideas can be shared across each division.

    The divisions
    There are three clinical divisions:
    • cancer centre services
    • cancer support services
    • network services. 
    There is also North West medical physics, research and development, estates, nursing and governance.

    Each division has formed a smaller group to feedback on what they are doing to take forward the actions from the plan.  They will also provide a progress update for the working group meeting.

    The trust is also working closely with its marketing department to look at ways of promoting what is being done to improve the results of the survey.  For example, looking to introduce a campaign across the intranet and other methods of communication such as notice boards,  team brief and the quarterly staff magazine that informs staff of what action has taken place i.e. `You Say, We Say.'

      Some examples from the action plan

     Issue Scoring less than average

     trust action

    No training in what to do if there is a major incident/emergency

    Identify the training need and arrange necessary training.

    Increase in physical violence from relatives of patients or service users

    Ensure there is a clear process in place for dealing with this type of behaviour.

    Raise awareness of the process to all external parties

    Infection control does not apply to me

    Raise awareness of importance of infection control and facilities around hospital for hand washing etc

    Last experience of harassment, bullying, abuse not reported

    Respect at Work policy to be re-communicated

    Training for respect at work advisers put in place

    No computer skills training

    Develop suite of relevant training that meets external benchmark, i.e. Chartered Manager

    Link to individual PDPs to assess skills required

    Communication between senior management and staff is not effective

    Improve communication processes across the trust

    Look at methods to ensure that all audiences are captured

     Training identified in PDP not received

    Link to appraisal/review process and workforce planning 

    No training in advising patients on condition/medication

    Link to appraisal/review and communication of clarity of roles at one-to-one meetings, team meetings 

    Injured or unwell: work related stress

    Ensure risk assessments undertaken and any respective action

    Manage absense in accordance with the policy

    Use the services of occupational health

    Results and next steps

    The trust is now looking at widening the scope of the group to look at reward and recognition – the ultimate objective is to appear in the top 100 employers listing. 

    The trust is also interested in looking into staff engagement and morale in more detail, and maybe link to leadership styles.  It is currently seeking proposals from organisations who can help with projects.
    The trust would also like to measure results on a more regular basis rather than wait for the results of the next annual staff survey. 

    Further information and contact details

    For more information about the work at Christie NHS Foundation Trust, please contact Eve Rowlands on 0161 446 8422 or at

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