Editorial

Senior staff need support to stay in post

Every year, Nursing Management’s sister publication Nursing Standard conducts a survey of nurse directors in the NHS. This year’s results reveal that turnover at this executive level remains worryingly high.
Sophie_Blakemore

Every year, Nursing Managements sister publication Nursing Standard conducts a survey of nurse directors in the NHS.

This years results reveal that turnover at this executive level remains worryingly high.

They show that 132 chief nurses at 230 English trusts, 14 Scottish and seven Welsh health boards have been in post only since 2014, and 33 stepped into the role only this year.

Struggling

New blood is to be welcomed in any organisation, but these statistics show that trusts are struggling to retain their most experienced nursing leaders.

At a time of health service austerity and rising demand, stability and leadership are vital to maintain staff morale and highquality patient care.

Nurses new to highlevel roles need mentorship to gain confidence and lead by example

Sophie Blakemore

It is unfair to expect nurses who are new to trust boards to guide

Every year, Nursing Management’s sister publication Nursing Standard conducts a survey of nurse directors in the NHS.

This year’s results reveal that turnover at this executive level remains worryingly high.

They show that 132 chief nurses at 230 English trusts, 14 Scottish and seven Welsh health boards have been in post only since 2014, and 33 stepped into the role only this year.

Struggling

New blood is to be welcomed in any organisation, but these statistics show that trusts are struggling to retain their most experienced nursing leaders.

At a time of health service austerity and rising demand, stability and leadership are vital to maintain staff morale and high‑quality patient care.

‘Nurses new to high‑level roles need mentorship to gain confidence and lead by example’ 

Sophie Blakemore

It is unfair to expect nurses who are new to trust boards to guide their workforces through the unprecedented level of demand faced by the health service.

Nurses new to high-pressured, high-level roles need greater support and mentorship to help them find their feet, and gain the confidence they need to empower their staff and lead by example.

Thankfully, the need for such support has been acknowledged by organisations that can make a difference to the situation.

In our last issue, we reported on a political leadership programme to help aspiring directors of nursing reach their goals (news, September).

Knowledge

Launched by the RCN, the programme aims to give staff at band 8 and above the skills and knowledge they need at the top.

NHS Improvement has also established a scheme in which experienced nurse directors give first-time chief nurses one-to-one coaching guidance.

Hopefully, these initiatives will start to have an effect on senior staff morale, and concerns about recruitment and retention to crucial positions in healthcare services will become a thing of the past.

Read the full findings of our nurse director survey here

Sign up to continue reading for FREE

OR

Subscribe for unlimited access

Enjoy 1 month's access for £1 and get:

  • Full access to nursingmanagement.com
  • Bi-monthly digital edition
  • RCNi Portfolio and interactive CPD quizzes
  • RCNi Learning with 200+ evidence-based modules
  • 10 articles a month from any other RCNi journal

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this?

Jobs