Talk Health and Care

knowledge of skill sets

Trusts only seem to value medical qualifications, with no recognition of other types of qualification. I gained a degree 2 years ago that I paid for myself and when I asked for it to be put on my personnel file I was told not to bother because the trust would never be interested iN it. Despite it being very relevant to the NHS, no one cared or bothered to respond when I asked if my record could be updated. 

 I believe that the Trusts are devaluing administration, ignoring the hard work and dedication to the the job and missing out on staff with skill sets that could be put to better use. Administration is becoming more and more technical and we are being asked to produce more and more work, a Band 3 is often working at the same level as a Band 4 but they get paid more? Believe it or not, without administrators picking up the slack the NHS would fall apart, we work extremely hard to ensure that audits get done, boxes that give the trusts more money get tick, paperwork is completed etc the CQC would have a field day if there were no admin staff clearing up behind the clinical staff. 

edited on Nov 2, 2018 by Isabel DHSC

Adam DHSC 5 months ago

Thank you for your comment Emma.

We understand how valuable administration staff to help the NHS and social care system run. In what ways do you think we can improve the situation you describe?


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Emma Kenny 5 months ago

There needs to be recognition of hard working admin teams, regarding skill sets, trusts should be obliged to capture all educational data about all staff, then they can look at skill sets and see where they can put people. I don't think that the banding works for non clinical staff, first of all it creates and reinforces the hierarchy within medical/mental health settings and this only feeds into the bullying culture within the NHS already. Admin gradings should be separate from clinical/non clinical because we do an entirely different role. By separating the gradings in this way it will help give admin a voice, which is often drowned out by 'higher graded staff '. We should be paid according to our knowledge, length of service and skill set. This way we cannot just be shoved into back offices and forgotten about.

There should be a similar grading put in place to the civil service, we are currently graded the same as health care assistants but are doing entirely separate work, it is skilled work and not everyone can do it.

We have to have college level qualifications these are A-Level equivalent, before we set foot through the door, HCA's in some cases start work unqualified and have to complete qualifications via the trust? How can Band 3 secretaries be considered the same as a Band 3 HCA, this is why it is coming across as though we are being devalued, I have worked as Administrative and as a HCA so I can say that there are huge differences in the 2 roles and they need to be paid accordingly. Admin is constantly evolving, we often are frontline having patient contact, dealing with very aggressive patients whilst performing our roles to the very best of our ability.
I do feel that it is unfair that civil servants can get awarded a bonus once a year but this is not available to nhs admin staff who work extremely hard but never seem to catch a break.

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Matt Hancock 2 months ago

Emma, First of all let me say I value all staff in the NHS and recognise what each and every one of you bring to the NHS. The NHS and social care sector have staff with a diverse background and a broad range of qualifications, skills and qualities. This absolutely includes administration staff and the crucial role that they play in supporting safe patient care and ensuring trusts are well managed.

I would expect your trust to take the opportunity to discuss your training needs and aspirations at regular appraisals and job evaluations to find out how best to use your talents. Job evaluations are a key part of the pay system and should ensure that staff receive equal pay for work of equal value so they are paid fairly for what they do.

I am delighted that you are committed to developing your career. I want learning and development to be placed right at the heart of how we support NHS staff to secure the skills they need. I am sure that having information about your qualifications on your personnel file would be of value to your organisation and I would encourage you to raise this with your line manager or HR colleagues. What else do you think that we can do to help support you?

Thank you for all the hard work you have put in over the years and keep the ideas on how we can support you coming.

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Emma Kenny 2 months ago

What more could be done? As I said separating the gradings for clinical and non clinical staff, we HAVE to have qualifications to get a job in admin and this should be recognised and considered when job evaluations are taking place. To start out as a HCA you only need to have maths and English, so where is the parity there? How is it that people who have spent 2 years at college working for qualifications to get a job are valued at the same level as those who in some cases have very little in the way of education?
Why aren’t Health and Social Care degrees pushed more because admin staff would benefit greatly form having a broader knowledge. Why are there not apprenticeships for us to access within the IT department so that those who are interested can go and gain qualifications in that area. Some trusts do offer higher level nvq qualifications for admin but there are very few posts at a higher grade to get in admin. Currently in my trust they are going to do yet another admin review, this will involve cutting posts and even less opportunities for progression on the admin side. We are asked to use more and more technology, are often the port of call for clinical staff who can’t grasp basic technology and yet are on the lowest pay in most cases.

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