Diversity network groups provide a forum for individuals to come together, to share ideas, raise awareness of challenges and provide support to each other. When working effectively they are a key mechanism for driving change and making a difference, as well as giving staff the opportunity to grow personally and professionally.  

Setting up an effective network group 

NHS Employers worked in partnership with colleagues from Barnsley NHS Foundation Trust and Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust to produce guidance designed to help organisations in the NHS set up staff network groups. The guide is based on established good practice and  encourages organisations to think clearly about aims, membership, accountability/reporting, logistics and key communications before setting up a network group. 

Richard McKenna the founder of Inclusive Employers reinforces these principles in his blog The future for staff networks where he talks about the importance of structure and plans when setting up networks. His starting point for networks is always - what do we need a network for? If there isn’t a clear answer, think about why you are doing it. Then consider what the network is there to do and what action the network is going to take and make sure this is SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-oriented).

Share your experiences of LGBT+Networks

To celebrate LGBT History Month in February 2018, LGBT+ Networks launched an online forum, which is part of a national research project funded by the Economic and Social Research Council and based at the University of York. The forum is a place for NHS staff to discuss their views and experiences of LGBT+ staff networks within their own organisations and find out how others are working.  To get involved visit LGBT+Networks and on Twitter @lgbt_networks.


Network groups in the NHS

Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has a BME staff network who helped to shape the organisations workforce race equality standard to meet its statutory obligations under the Equality Act 2010.

The Health & Care Women Leaders Network, delivered by NHS Confederation and NHS Employers is a free network for women working across health and care. The network hosts events, masterclasses and tweet chats, and shares learning through podcasts, blogs, videos and key reports.

Creating a personal, fair & diverse NHS

Join our vibrant network of Personal, Fair and Diverse (PFD) champions who are committed to taking action, however small, to create a personal, fair and diverse workplace. The campaign has around 5000 champions across organisations in the NHS.

If you are passionate about an NHS with patients at its heart, care about working in an NHS which is fair and accessible to all, and believe that diverse workplaces make organisations better, you should join our PFD champions network. 

Related News

NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard - 2018 report published

A new report has been published which highlights the experience of black and minority ethnic (BME) people working in the NHS.

View article

Improving workforce disability equality in the NHS

2019 will be a key year for workforce disability within the NHS due to the introduction of the Workforce Disability Equality Standard, find out what is happening.

View article




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