Strategic health authorities have been urged to give unsuccessful primary care trust chief executives 'transparent and appropriate' feedback on the reasons they have failed to secure a top job in the newly reconfigured organisations.

Strategic health authorities have been urged to give unsuccessful primary care trust chief executives 'transparent and appropriate' feedback on the reasons they have failed to secure a top job in the newly reconfigured organisations.

Managers in Partnership chief executive John Restell told HSJthat the apparent lack of arrangements to give failed candidates feedback on why they were not appointed to the new posts was 'scandalous'.

'We want something more than a transcript of the interview,' he said. 'We are pressing SHAs to inform chief executives how they scored and fared against other candidates.' The union has sent SHAs a series of guidelines which it is urging them to sign up to (see box below).

Mr Restell said there were 'worrying' accounts of the way the interview and assessment processes had been conducted. 'We are asking employer organisations to address the lack of confidence in the process, by adopting a transparent approach to feedback,' he said.

Mr Restell said the union had also received complaints from successful PCT chief executives, who believe that the process has 'undermined' their own appointments.

Speaking at a MiP meeting in Walsall last week, he described the way the Department of Health had implemented Commissioning a Patient-led NHSas a 'pig's ear'.

He urged SHAs to make 'every effort' to match chief executives who had succeeded in the interview and assessment process to the national pool of PCT chief executive vacancies. 'Before decisions are made or interviews conducted for these jobs these chief executives must be matched,' he said.

He said that 'suitable alternative employment' for PCT chief executives would be another chief executive post. 'If SHAs agreed to this, it could restore confidence and reduce managers' mistrust and anger with the process,' he said.

Currently, just over a third of PCT chief executives who hoped for jobs running their successor organisations look set to be successful.

www.unison.org.uk/mip

Guidelines for feedback for SHAs to unsuccessful chief executives

  • What selection criteria were adopted at interview stage and why?
  • What questions were asked of each candidate and why?
  • How did the answers given compare to the answers sought?
  • What scoring or assessment method was adopted in the interviews and any shortlisting?
  • How did the unsuccessful candidate score compared to the anonymised successful candidates?
  • Who comprised the interview/selection panel and what training have they received and when in making their selection decisions?
  • Did composition of the interview panel accord with paragraph 58 of the DoH human resources framework and if not why not?
  • Did the panel have an HR adviser on hand? If so who? If not why not?
  • What measures were adopted to assess the equality and diversity impact?
  • Candidates should be given copies of notes taken in the interview, assessment centre reports and results, references, any other documents, however held, concerning the application and non-appointment.