NHS – Your Next Move?

The NHS has recently launched the largest recruitment drive in its history. For many Service-leavers, a career in the NHS could be the ideal next step.

By Sarah Todhunter

The NHS is spending £8 million on a recruitment drive aimed at boosting the numbers of new recruits by as many as 22,000. Prime Minister, Theresa May, has also promised an additional £20bn a year to support the NHS by 2023.

Service-leavers are among the best-placed people to meet the service’s need for new staff members. Many of the qualities and strengths that you already possess as a result of your time in Service will stand you in good stead for a career in the NHS.

These skills include working well under pressure, strong leadership and organisational skills.

The NHS is especially interested in finding nurses (with a shortfall of around 34,000 nurses announced in mid-2017). Nevertheless, there is an amazing variety of roles available in the NHS. Indeed, one of the key aims of the recruitment drive is to inform the public about the many different types of jobs that the NHS offers.

Opportunities

Whether you wish to work as a GP or a midwife, there are opportunities both for work and training within the NHS. Within nursing itself, for example, you might pursue a career specialising in anything from mental health to community nursing. Meanwhile, outside of the medical field, you will also
find a plethora of jobs in the NHS, ranging from drivers to catering staff and from cleaning roles to jobs as hospital porters, strategic planners, IT support technicians, receptionists, and much more.

Crucially, there is a need for NHS staff across the whole of the country, so location need not be factored into any decision regarding employment. Many Service-leavers have existing medical training and experience which can be put to excellent use in the NHS. However, it is also possible to take the opportunity to re-train and gain new skills in the medical field in order to make the transition to working for the National Health Service.

Why is now the time to think about working in the NHS?

The NHS has been facing Brexit-related difficulties since the EU Referendum of 2016 and as a result has seen both a large number of overseas staff leaving and a simultaneous drop in recruitment numbers. Just one of these issues would have had a detrimental impact on the NHS but occurring together, they
are genuinely testing. Hence the current focus on recruitment. There are 1.2 million NHS staff in total with around 6% of them from other parts of the EU, with the highest concentration in London. Many other registered doctors and nurses and other non-medical staff are from other countries, outside of the EU.

There are fears that Brexit will continue both to drive existing staff members from EU countries away from the NHS and also discourage trained professionals from within the EU from applying to work in the NHS in the future. As a result, it is crucial that the NHS recruits as many staff members as possible, as soon as possible, in order to remedy the shortfall and ensure that the NHS can run smoothly in the future.

Whatever your motivations for considering a career in the NHS, there is no doubt that now is an excellent time to make the move, as the National Health Service is actively seeking new recruits on an unprecedented scale.

If you are thinking of applying for a job in the NHS, all of the key information that you will need can be found on the official NHS recruitment website: www.jobs.nhs.uk.

If you are thinking of working in a particular NHS trust, individual trust’s websites will also have specific information about job opportunities in your chosen area.

Take your first step towards a career in the NHS

There are fears that Brexit will continue both to drive existing staff members from EU countries away from the NHS and also discourage trained professionals from within the EU from applying to work in the NHS in the future.

As a result, it is crucial that the NHS recruits as many staff members as possible, as soon as possible, in order to remedy the shortfall and ensure that the NHS can run smoothly in the future.

Whatever your motivations for considering a career in the NHS, there is no doubt that now is an excellent time to make the move, as the National Health Service is actively seeking new recruits on an unprecedented scale.

If you are thinking of applying for a job in the NHS, all of the key information that you will need can be found on the official NHS recruitment website: www.jobs.nhs.uk.

If you are thinking of working in a particular NHS trust, individual trust’s websites will also have specific information about job opportunities in your
chosen area.

Interested in finding out more about NHS career opportunities for ex-Armed Forces personnel?

Check out the Step into Health website: www.militarystepintohealth.nhs.uk

Whether you are interested in catering, maintenance, administration, finance,
communications, management, or a role in one of the clinical services, the Step into Health programme could be the first move towards a new civilian career in the NHS.

There are over 350 different careers in the NHS and there is a role for everyone with the right skills and values.

You can enter the NHS whatever your background, previous work experience and qualifications. According to the website, once you are in the NHS, they will “Work with you to develop your career, and fulfil your potential”.

“The Step into Health Programme has been created because the NHS recognises the transferable skills and cultural values that Armed Forces personnel develop when Serving, and how they are compatible with those required within NHS roles.”

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