Staff at Barnsley Hospital have reported improvements in flexible working, diversity, equality and inclusion, team-working and compassionate leadership, in the annual NHS staff survey for 2022.

The survey is split into nine themes that make up the NHS people promise. Staff have rated Barnsley Hospital as higher than the average Acute Trust for each of these themes.  The hospital’s scores across the nine themes are the highest of the acute trusts in Yorkshire and the Humber. The hospital is also among highest scoring Trusts in England for compassionate leadership, flexible working and team working.

The survey is conducted nationally in NHS organisations and is the biggest survey of staff opinion in the UK. It gathers views on staff experience at work around key areas such as equality, diversity and inclusion, health and wellbeing, immediate managers, morale, quality of appraisals, quality of care, safe environment – bullying and harassment, safe environment – violence, safety culture, staff engagement and team working.

This year’s final response rate to the survey at Barnsley Hospital was 56 percent an excellent result compared to the national average of 44 per cent. Staff answered questions under seven ‘People Promise’ themes in the survey and two separate questions relating to staff engagement and staff morale. These were:

  • We are compassionate and inclusive
  • We are recognised and rewarded
  • We each have a voice that counts
  • We are safe and healthy
  • We are always learning
  • We work flexibly
  • We are a team
  • Would you recommend your organisation as a place to work?
  • Would you recommend your organisation as a place to receive treatment?

Director of Workforce Steve Ned, reporting on the figures, thanked staff for completing the survey. He said: “Across every one of the nine themes, compared to the average, our staff have said that their experience of working in Barnsley is better than elsewhere. For example, under ‘compassionate and inclusive,’ we scored 7.5 compared to an average of 7.2.

“In terms of flexible working and team working, our staff have reported that we’re the best organisation within our comparison group which I think is really important. One of the things we’ve done in the last couple of years is look to where organisations are performing well. One of the things



we have learned from that is that flexible working provides an environment for staff to give of their best while it balances work commitments with life commitments, and it improves morale within the organisation. “

He added that Barnsley had done a specific amount of work around diversity, equality and inclusion, and compassionate leadership, so it was pleasing to see that survey results were especially good in this area. Staff had also been asked in the survey about feeling ‘burnt out,’ and commenting on this Steve added: “This was a real issue both in Barnsley and the wider NHS because of what staff have been through in terms of both operational pressures and the Covid pandemic.”

He said: “NHS staff have also said to us that it’s really important they’re in a ‘learning environment’ at work, and again, in terms of development and appraisals, we score well compared to the average. Our appraisal scores are good – we get good response rates to appraisals– but there is more work we could do around the quality of these in terms of supporting people to be able to do their jobs.

“We scored well in team working and had a really good response around line management. On the two questions about staff recommending their organisation as a place to work, and recommending it as a place to receive treatment, while we were better than average, there is still some way to go to be regarded as the best in our comparison group.”

Dr Richard Jenkins, Barnsley Hospital Trust Chief Executive, said: “We work extremely hard here in Barnsley to provide quality care against increasing demands and the survey results are important because they are used to improve care for patients and working conditions for all staff.

“We have a really good set of survey results which I think reflects well on all of our staff; people are looking out for each other and managing each other really well. There is always room for improvement, and always organisations that are going to be better than us, so we need to keep going forwards and building on this.”