Digital tools are becoming a key part of our day-to-day routine – from smartphones to AI, we have adopted technology to assist in both our personal and professional lives. In recent years the NHS has similarly begun adopting technology into their workforce planning, with £25 million in funding having been made available in the Digitising Social Care Fund.
We know that one of the biggest challenges facing the NHS is the staffing crisis. With a current vacancy of 133,400, the need for recruitment and improved retention in the NHS is clear – however, recruiting enough clinicians to fill these current gaps will not happen overnight. Digital solutions can help mitigate the impact of the staffing crisis – for example, in helping ensure safe staffing levels and assisting in the onboarding process for new recruits. Below are a few technological innovations that can invariably help alleviate some of these pressures.
Workforce Planning Tools
Digital Scheduling Platforms
Keeping a fully staffed rota – even in a department with no vacancies – can pose a significant challenge. Building shift patterns for teams that provide 24-hour care across multiple sites whilst ensuring legal obligations and individual preferences are adhered to, can be time consuming and hard-work. Furthermore, with manual processes, changes to the rotas can cause havoc for version control and don’t allow for easy updates, leaving staff confused over which rotas are correct.
Digital solution can help organisations save time and effort creating rotas, automatically tracking contracted hours of staff, availability to work and annual leave. Distributing rotas via a digital platform means that there’s only ever ‘one version of the truth’ which staff can access anywhere, on any device. Workforce management software like RotaMaster can take the strain out of day-to-day planning, freeing up administrative time for clinicians by automatically building compliant rotas weeks in advance at the click of a button.
Digital Onboarding Support
One obvious solution to scheduling difficulties is to employ more staff. The clinical vacancy rate far outnumbers the number of UK trained doctors, including students currently undertaking medical training. At Remedium, we believe that international recruitment should form a key part of organisation’s workforce strategy. There is simply no other way to ensure clinical gaps are filled in a timely manner.
Though international recruitment is a clear solution to help organisations fill vacancies, it can be a long and administratively intensive process. Digital solutions can help both organisations and clinicians smoothly make the move to the UK with minimal disruption to existing workflows, and reassurance and support at every stage for clinicians. Digital platforms, such as Red Carpet, help organisations track applicants progress, reducing the administrative input needed from organisations to onboard new hires. For applicants, the platform offers support at every step. Moving to the UK from overseas, or even to a new area of the UK, can be a daunting prospect, and it is unsurprising that without sufficient support applicants may not complete their journey. Completing visa applications, finding out about a new area, and finding accommodation are significant and time intensive processes. Red Carpet helps streamline these processes, ensuring they are all completed in good time.
Red Carpet has helped thousands of clinicians move to the NHS, or between organisations. In 2022, Remedium began a partnership with Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust to support their recruitment effort – including the use of Red Carpet to assist clinicians moving to the Trust.
“In 2022, we began our partnership with Remedium. We had been awarded funding to recruit clinical staff from overseas but were struggling with supporting candidates in their journey from their host country to the UK. Remedium stepped in with their Red Carpet platform, which helped us recruit and successfully bring over 13 international recruits since 2022, and 110 clinicians in total. The feedback from clinical staff has been amazing – the journey to SWBT has been made less stressful for them, without trust input. Candidates are supported financially, in finding accommodation, and in building a network when they arrive in the UK. I would definitely recommend Remedium and the Red Carpet platform for any trusts looking at international recruitment”.
Frieza Mahmood, Chief People Officer at Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust
At Remedium, we are proud to support the NHS in solving the healthcare staffing crisis. Since 2013, we have worked with over 100 organisations to source and place 3,500 clinicians, and supported many more on their journey into the NHS. To find out more about how Remedium could help you, get in touch today.