Best Places to Work 2014 – mental health trust

  • Full time permanent staff: 3,739
  • Voluntary staff turnover: 8 per cent
  • Exec team male/female ratio: 75 per cent male /25 per cent female
  • Programme to recruit ethnic diverse staff: yes

East London Foundation Trust provides mental health and community services to a population of around 750,000. Its workforce are able to work flexibly by, for example, compressing their hours, part-time working, job sharing, home working, taking employment breaks, taking unpaid leave, or reducing annual working time.

Best places to work top 10 star

“We try to adopt a coaching culture in the trust”, says Hasan Cagirtgan, associate director of HR and organisational development.

There’s a good relationship between senior managers and staff with 78 per cent believing their immediate manager can be counted on to offer help during a difficult task and 75 per cent believing the care of patients is top priority for the trust.

Staff report good communication between senior management and 77 per cent believe they can contribute towards improvements at work. A large majority, 61 per cent, feel recognised for good work.

“It is important that staff are properly recognised by their colleagues, by their line managers and by the organisation,” says Mr Cagirtgan. Quarterly tests are carried out and employees encouraged to share what the trust should be doing to improve working lives.

It is vital that the workforce reflects the ethnically diverse east end community they serve, and this is something the trust is actively working towards. As well as looking to third sector organisations, the trust is also borrowing the expertise of the East London Business Alliance to actively recruit from various communities.

Workshops such as massage sessions, pilates courses are also available to keep staff fit and healthy as well helping to alleviate stress.