We’re proud to announce that NHS Wales have awarded their feedback and improvement contract to Qlearsite – powering the NHS Wales Staff Survey 2020 with our advanced language technology, and data-led survey solutions.
In the healthcare sector, the impact of employee engagement can be life-changing. At Qlearsite, it’s our hope that we can provide the insights NHS Wales need to make important changes – all based on the reflections of their employees.
NHS Wales and Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW)
With close to 90,000 employees, NHS Wales provides healthcare services to approximately 3 million people – and the HEIW is responsible for supporting health and social care with education provision and ongoing development.
Qlearsite has been chosen as the partner with both the 2020 Staff Survey and regular surveys during 2021. The key aims are to get as many people as possible involved in giving feedback and taking part in discussion afterwards, so that local teams are able to make collaborative decisions on how to improve their work and workplaces.
This helps meet the Welsh Health & Social Care strategy A Healthier Wales, and is supporting workforce and digital strategies where the wellbeing of patients, communities, and colleagues who work within health and social care is paramount.
Engagement and healthcare: understanding employee experiences in NHS Wales
Their organisation-wide focus is to create a collective culture: by listening, sharing reflections, and using lived experiences to push towards positive change. For that to happen, it means taking the following steps:
- Gather meaningful data: for NHS Wales, this means collecting qualitative data in the form of their employees’ experiences and stories – and Qlearsite’s advanced language analysis technology will facilitate that, drawing out sentiment and common themes
- Use a simple, accessible system: once data has been collected, it needs to be organised into clear reports and breakdowns that can be accessed when needed and easily interpreted – all to identify opportunities for organisational improvements
The ultimate goal is finding ways to increase participation and ownership – the emotional connection people have to their work – because of its proven impact on a wide range of areas, from patient mortality to staff turnover.
Why is employee engagement important in healthcare?
Employee engagement has known links to organisational performance, impacting everything from profitability to absenteeism. But high engagement in a healthcare setting can lead to life-changing outcomes, with research showing several areas of interest:
1. Patient experiences and employee engagement
- Lower mortality rates: the relationship between high engagement and low mortality results has been found by several studies – one identifying it as the primary factor influencing mortality rates across hospitals, and another suggesting a small boost in engagement could reduce mortality rates by 2.4%
- Fewer complications: a similar link was found with high engagement scores and fewer patients suffering from complications, stronger than the impact of staff numbers or the patients’ existing health issues
- Reduced infections: feeling empowered to improve the organisation is one measure of an engaged employee, and one study saw hospital infection rates drop as a result – which could limit MRSA cases significantly
2. Staff wellbeing and employee engagement
- Improved Mental health: historically, engaged NHS employees show higher levels of health and wellbeing, and with 20% at risk of suffering from poor mental health, that’s important to remember
- Less absenteeism: again, the research agrees that higher engagement leads to lower absenteeism – key for health services coping with any degree of stretch
- Lower turnover: NHS trusts with higher enagement levels also showed 0.6% lower turnover which, along with absenteeism, has a significant impact on organisational performance
3. Organisational performance and employee engagement
- Improved financial performance: 10 million days lost annually from NHS Staff equated to losses of £1.75 billion – so reducing absenteeism and turnover, by boosting employee engagement, is a financial priority as well an employee wellbeing necessity
- Better standards: a clear correlation has also been identified between high engagement and high performance scores from the Care Quality Commission
Besides the practical and performance benefits, such as reduced absenteeism and fewer financial losses, employee engagement can have a life-changing, live-saving impact on the healthcare sector.
NHS Wales recognises the importance of listening and understanding their employee experiences, so they can help make crucial improvements – and at Qlearsite, we’re proud to be supporting impactful change in this way.