Hospitals ‘grow their own’ talent with apprenticeships


Hospitals ‘grow their own’ talent with apprenticeships

It’s National Apprenticeship Week (5-9 March) and there are some fantastic career development opportunities available across hospitals in Mid and South Essex.
Apprenticeships are a route into many aspects of a career in the NHS, in clinical and non-clinical areas. More than 350 of people of all ages have joined apprenticeship schemes across Mid Essex, Southend and Basildon and Thurrock Hospitals to date.

During National Apprenticeship Week the training providers including Anglia Ruskin University, the University of Essex, Intraining and Lifetime Training will attend Mid Essex, Southend and Basildon Hospitals to showcase the options they offer for apprenticeship learning and development.

Jayne Toplis, associate director of people and organisational development, said: “We are committed to improving the long-term career prospects of our staff, giving them a head start on forging a fantastic career. Our staff are our greatest asset and we believe in ‘growing our own’ by helping people to develop internally. Fostering talent is key to ensuring that our workforce is equipped to deliver the best possible care to our patients.

“Apprenticeships are a great opportunity for absolutely everyone, from school leavers to those who are looking for a change in career direction or want to do something rewarding with their career.

“There are a range of apprenticeships available to support your career development in both professional and technical fields such as healthcare, business administration, customer service, finance, and leadership and management and we have a dedicated vocational and workforce redesign advisor on site at each of the three trusts who can provide information, advice and guidance on the full range of apprenticeship opportunities available.”

Case studies

Eleanor Evans, finance apprentice, BTUH

When Eleanor Evans, 19, was studying for a business diploma at college she found she had a good head for numbers. That made the
prospect of learning while she earned with an apprenticeship, instead of building up a student debt, all the more appealing.

Encouraged by her college, she applied for an apprenticeship in the finance department at Basildon University Hospital, where she has achieved a level 2 qualification in Association of Account Technicians (AAT) accounting.

Eleanor said: “I had heard of apprenticeships but I didn’t know how much you can get from them. For me, it’s a much better option than going to uni; learning on the job means you develop your skills while building up work experience. And I’m not in debt!

“When I came for an interview they told me there were lots of applicants so I was really happy and excited to get the apprenticeship. My manager in the
finance team arranged for me to spend the first weeks doing different jobs around the hospital – I
helped the porters for a week, spent time with the purchasing and procurement team, and had clinical staff practising their plastering skills on me.

“It was fantastic doing that, because it gave me a really good understanding of what goes on in a hospital and how the money is spent. It made me understand how the work of the finance team is relevant to caring for patients.

“Everyone in the finance team has been so friendly and supportive. I have been studying while working and everything I’ve learned here has helped with my exams.”

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