East Lancashire Hospitals Trust – Engage to Make a Difference

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In 2013, following the Keogh Review, East Lancashire Hospitals Trust was placed in special measures. The impact on staff is said to have been significant: rock bottom morale, and an awareness that the local population had lost faith in the trust due to media coverage portraying it as a failing organisation. Results of the national staff surveys showed employee engagement at the trust was significantly below the national average.

The need for cultural change was clear, and it was strongly felt that creating the freedom for all staff to speak up about concerns would be a crucial foundation. Enter a dedicated staff engagement team, including a full time staff guardian.

Together, team members created the Engage to Make a Difference project. It was designed to make it easier for staff to communicate their worries, and to receive information from executives about the direction of the organisation. Specific measures included the introduction of a dedicated e-mail address to raise confidential concerns; a “rumour buster” e-mail address; and listening exercises with the chief executive.

The results of the latest national staff survey now show above average scores of engagement, with the trust in the top 20 per cent of organisations on 16 key measures of staff satisfaction. And the organisation’s own surveys have similar findings – 81 per cent of staff would now recommend the organisation for care and treatment, and 74 per cent recommend it as a place to work.

Read a detailed case study about this project at HSJ Solutions


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