Freedom to act

Download Full Handbook Download This Section

This factor measures the extent to which the jobholder is required to be accountable for their own actions and those of others, to use own initiative and act independently; and the discretion given to the jobholder to take action.

It takes account of any restrictions on the jobholder’s freedom to act imposed by, for example, supervisory control; instructions, procedures, practices and policies; professional, technical or occupational codes of practice or other ethical guidelines; the nature or system in which the job operates; the position of the job within the organisation; and the existence of any statutory responsibility for service provision.

Level 1:           Generally works with supervision close by and within well established procedures and/or practices and has standards and results to be achieved. 
Level 2: Is guided by standard operating procedures (SOPs), good practice, established precedents and understands what results or standards are to be achieved. Someone is generally available for reference and work may be checked on a sample/random basis.
Level 3: Is guided by precedent and clearly defined occupational policies, protocols, procedures or codes of conduct. Work is managed, rather than supervised, and results/outcomes are assessed at agreed intervals.
Level 4: Expected results are defined but the post holder decides how they are best achieved and is guided by principles and broad occupational policies or regulations. Guidance may be provided by peers or external reference points.
Level 5: Is guided by general health, organisational or broad occupational policies, but in most situations the post holder will need to establish the way in which these should be interpreted.
Level 6: Is required to interpret overall health service policy and strategy, in order to establish goals and standards.

 

Definitions and notes

Within well-established procedures and/or practices (Level 1)
is appropriate where jobholders are required to follow well defined procedures and do not generally deviate from these without seeking advice and guidance is guided by standard operating procedures (SOPs), good practice and established precedents (Level 2).

Is guided by standard operating procedures (SOPs), good practice, established precedents (Level 2) for example a jobholder may be required to deal with enquiries and other matters which are generally routine, but is normally able to refer non-routine enquiries and other matters to others.

Is guided by precedent and clearly defined occupational policies, protocols, procedures or codes of conduct (Level 3), is appropriate where the jobholder has the freedom to act within established parameters. Qualified professional/clinical/ technical/scientific/administrative roles typically meet this requirement

Work is managed, rather than supervised (Level 3) is appropriate where jobholders are required to act independently within appropriate occupational guidelines, deciding when it is necessary to refer to their manager.

Is guided by principles and broad occupational policies (Level 4) is appropriate where the jobholder has significant discretion to work within a set of defined parameters. This applies, for example, to those who are the lead specialist or section/department manager in a particular (non-clinical or clinical) field e.g. an HR job specialising in continuing personal development (CPD), a clinical practitioner specialising in a particular field. This level also applies to jobs with responsibility for interpreting policies in relation to a defined caseload or locality in the community.

Establish the way in which these should be interpreted (Level 5) indicates freedom to take action based on own interpretation of broad clinical/professional/ administrative/technical/scientific policies, potentially advising the organisation on how these should be interpreted e.g. consultant, professional and managerial roles. This also applies to specialists, who have the freedom to initiate action within broad policies, seeking advice as necessary. By definition there can only be one or a very small number of jobs at this level in any service or department.

Is required to interpret overall health service policy and strategy (Level 6) would be appropriate for jobs with an ongoing requirement to act with minimal guidelines and set goals and standards for others.

Latest Tweets

Latest Blog Post

Integration on the front line - NHS reservists working together

06 / 9 / 2019 2pm

Gemma Wright, programme lead for the Armed Forces programme, blogs about her experience on a military reservists hospital training exercise.

Why Register?

Sounds great, what next?

Not now, I will register later

Log In