The NHS is the largest employer in South West London, with many more employed in health and care roles in our council, voluntary and community sector and private health and care partner organisations in the area.
This means that as a system we are best placed to help strengthen the employment prospects and opportunities for our local communities.
We are prioritising work that addresses the most challenging areas for under represented and less advantaged communities across South West London:
Targeted engagement and informed reach to improve recruitment
A keen focus of this work is being culturally mindful when linking with the community and the varied accessibility needs of underrepresented groups, including Black, Asian and minority ethnic men and women, people with carer responsibilities, young people (particularly those leaving the care system), deaf and disabled people.
This insight work will help us to develop new routes into work for people from these groups and campaigns to help our communities consider jobs in health and care that they may not have considered before.
Social mobility of our existing staff
Here I am South West London is a large scale engagement project helping us to develop insight into the NHS workforce in South West London skills and aspirations to help us develop our social mobility plans and career pathways.
We are aware that in many instances staff who have travelled from overseas are currently working in entry level roles despite holding postgraduate qualifications in a range of sectors.
This intelligence gathering will align NHS workforce challenges and strategy to available opportunities and/or interventions such as CPD, specific functional skills development, promotion or a new role in a different area.
Social mobility for our local communities
Our project based work experience programme has been designed to lower barriers to entry and support local people to progress and settle into roles and careers within healthcare organisations.
We are working with education providers and NHS employers to provide potential staff work experience in areas of need. The programme also supports participating NHS managers to develop coaching skills and progress their own careers.
Plain English recruitment documentation
This important work has been scoped to begin the process of consistently simplifying the language and content of adverts, job descriptions and person specifications to make sure readers only receive relevant information about the job requirements.
This will enable applicants across South West London to easily identify their existing and transferable skills, gained through previous employment and lived experience.
Supporting our local community with pre-employment training
We are introducing the NHS England Step into Work employability programme in South West London, designed specifically for unemployed adults to get them into entry level health and social care roles.
We are working with further education colleges to support people currently unemployed into a supported employability programme which is aligned to work experience to build strong interview skills and job readiness. We are also developing accessible guidance and resources to support the overall approach.