CIPD and NHS partnership set to transform the future of 16,000 people professionals

NHS England and NHS Improvement commit to a 5-year partnership agreement today

Leaders from the CIPD and NHS England and NHS Improvement met today to sign a 5-year partnership agreement. They chose International HR Day to celebrate this significant and symbolic collaboration to raise the profile, capabilities and confidence of the NHS’s 16,000 HR, OD and L&D professionals.

The partnership will be pivotal in helping the people profession across the NHS play its critical role in delivering on the vision set out in the NHS People Plan and the new Future of NHS HR & OD report. Supporting a workforce of around 1.4 million people, the effectiveness of NHS people professionals matters to everyone.

Peter Cheese, chief executive of the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, said:

“The NHS matters to all of us, and its people have an incredible commitment to do what’s right for their patients even in the toughest of circumstances. Its ability to deliver on this purpose – better patient outcomes for all – depends on a culture of support, having the people and resources it needs, and the encouragement to learn and develop capabilities. The people profession has to be at the heart of this, but itself also needs the capabilities, professionalism, support and confidence to help enable the organisation to deliver.

“It’s a real privilege for us to partner with an organisation of the scale and importance of the NHS, and to see the commitment from the leadership of the people profession within the NHS to these goals.”

Thomas Simons, Chief HR & OD Officer, NHS England and NHS Improvement, continued:

“During the last two years, our HR and OD people have contributed in many ways, far beyond the normal expectations of their profession. We already had an amazing foundation to work with and examples of really good practice. We now need to create a clear, consistent identity. Our partnership with the CIPD is challenging us to look longer term, to shape leading-edge thinking, and to create systems for research and evidence-based practice, so we can put NHS people and our patients at the heart of our development.”

Roujin Ghamsari, Deputy Director of People – Professional Development, NHS England and NHS Improvement, explained:

“People are healthcare’s most important asset. We need to build confidence in the service we provide to our frontline colleagues by ensuring our people professionals are appropriately resourced, developed and recognised. Through our relationship with the CIPD we’re saying, very clearly, that we are serious about the development of our profession. We want to create a clear catalogue of support, so we can attract the best and retain them. We want to build the best place for them to work – one where they feel empowered to grow and thrive. And we want to communicate a consistent set of high standards, informed by good practice and evidence, that helps our professionals anticipate and address changes in healthcare and work.”

Adam Stanbury, Head of Employer Solutions at the CIPD, added:

“The NHS is built on professionalism. This partnership demonstrates the real commitment of the NHS to extend this to their HR and OD function. The NHS will become a place that people professionals want to be part of – a place that supports ambition, builds skills, respects expertise and creates career paths. Together we’ll support people’s development journeys, recognise the knowledge they already have, and provide the growth and credibility that enables them to hold their own with other professionals.”

This partnership is the latest example of how the CIPD works with organisations to build their people teams. Committed to raising the capability, credibility and impact of the people profession, the CIPD works with hundreds of organisations to strengthen their HR, L&D and OD teams.

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