The team at Ryalto is delighted to see NHS Trusts across the UK launch innovative schemes to better manage staff wellbeing, stress levels and work-life balance (as highlighted in The Guardian). From personal leadership experience within the NHS and now, as a people-focussed partner, we’ve long believed that people who are cared for, care better. Feeling engaged, recognised and valued is fundamental to driving excellent patient services and outcomes.
The article cites a 100,000 staff shortage, causing an acute crisis in the NHS. We know this is as much a retention issue as a recruitment one. We’re losing people – in droves – “from the bedside”. Fewer people than ever before are looking to work at the NHS. With high stress levels, lack of flexibility, underappreciation, feelings of disempowerment, and a culture of disconnect and bullying, people are either not returning after maternity leave, taking early retirement, or simply leaving altogether.
It’s great to see different Trusts take a multi-pronged approach to tackle these issues, on the path to becoming better employers:
- Introducing wellbeing initiatives such as yoga, pilates and mindfulness classes to boost health alongside a “take a break” culture.
- Creating more effective communication across and within Trust teams.
- Exploring more flexible working patterns – from part time through to term time hours.
- Encouraging more transparent conversations around mental health.
- Looking at ways to reduce financial pressure on staff – from financial education to free parking.
Ryalto CEO Katrina Percy said, “We’re huge advocates of addressing staff wellbeing and paying attention to their needs. It’s a cliché but nurses, doctors, healthcare assistants, simply can’t pour from an empty cup. Wellbeing is a major issue that needs to be prioritised – whether it’s taking time out for team building activities, improving internal communications and engagement, offering flexible working, or encouraging downtime.”