Human resource (HR) management (sometimes referred to as personnel management) includes the overall responsibility for recruitment, selection, appraisal, staff development and training, understanding and implementing employment legislation and welfare.
HR managers may have responsibility for workforce planning or work for one or more directorates (for example surgery, day care or accident and emergency) where they will provide HR support and advice to the general manager responsible for that directorate. This might involve advising on the redeployment of staff from a ward that is closing or advertising strategies for the recruitment of new staff. HR managers may have a responsibility for a particular group of staff such as all medical staff working within an NHS trust.
Some senior HR managers (for example assistant directors of HR) will have broad areas of responsibility, such as operations or training, development and recruitment, and implementing national initiatives.
There are a variety of job roles and job titles in this area of management. Here are some examples of job roles.
Human resources manager working in a specialist trust providing mental health services for adults, older people, children and adolescents and also substance misuse and specialist learning disabilities. In this example, the HR manager would take a lead role in the trusts human resources agenda and lead on specific corporate HR objectives. Key areas of responsibility would include: recruitment & retention of staff; maintenance of the attendance management process; handling formal grievance and disciplinary process and appeals; the design and delivery of training and development programmes; providing advice on principles and detail of employment legislation and good practice; the maintenance of effective employee relations including participation in local formal consultation machinery and processes of job evaluation, salary administration and reward management. In addition there would be the opportunity to play a key role in specific corporate HR projects such as Improving Working Lives, and Agenda for Change. This post would require an ability to build relationships at all levels, and knowledge of the current NHS HR agenda. This type of post would require experience in a Human Resources role within the NHS.
Medical staffing manager working in a hospital NHS trust. In this example, the postholder has responsibility for all medical staff working within the Trust, with the exception of medical students. This includes responsibility for terms and conditions of medical staff, recruitment and selection of professional grade staff. The postholder will advise and support medical staff on HR-related issues and be involved with the international recruitment of medical staff, workforce planning and the Working Time Directive. Good organisational, time-management and communication skills are required for this type of role along with an ability to work under pressure, be assertive and work using initiative.
Assistant director of human resources (workforce development). In this example, this postholder would lead the trusts development and implementation of a comprehensive training and development plan working in partnership with areas of the trust also delivering education. Delivery of the plan would involve liaison with partner organisations across Teesside and the North East. Effective leadership of teams including those providing vocational training, staff development and workforce planning would be a key element of this post. The postholder would need experience of staff development and/or workforce planning, and effective leadership skills. A sound knowledge of current NHS strategic workforce issues would also be required. A postgraduate qualification in a development related subject or membership of the Institute of Personnel and Development would be essential.
Divisional human resources manager working within a university hospitals NHS trust. One of four HR managers, providing strategic development and leadership support to the Modernisation Agenda. Managing a team of 16 and budget of £766,000 the postholder would be expected to ensure that communication between colleagues flowed freely, knowledge was shared and skills fine-tuned. The employer would require the postholder to have operational experience in a progressive HR function, at least part of which has been gained at an operational level in the NHS, and to hold an appropriate human resources qualification.
Deputy director of personnel reporting to the director of personnel. In this example, the postholder would be required to support the delivery of the trusts service plans and modernisation programmes, lead a team of HR professionals to provide management and organisational development and to take the lead on Improving Working Lives and the Diversity Agenda. The employer would expect the postholder to be fully qualified with senior management experience in HR and to have exceptional interpersonal and influencing skills together with proven leadership skills.
There are opportunities to work at non-management levels with the human resources function of the NHS. For more information about these, please click on the link 'Human resources staff' on the right hand side of the page.
a) Staff wishing to enter HR management roles may be able to enter at an administrative or clerical level and gain promotion into supervisory and managerial roles, having gained suitable experience and appropriate qualifications.
b) There are also opportunities to enter HR management with a degree, via the HR specialism of the NHS Graduate Management Training Scheme. The scheme incorporates the study of CIPD qualifications.
Minimum eligibility requirements* for the management training scheme are as follows:
A 2:2 degree in any subject
A postgraduate qualification (MBA, Masters, PhD)
Degree level equivalent qualifications that are health or management related to include:
Qualifications not accepted:
*For the most up to date details please visit the website for the NHS Graduate Management Training Scheme
Applicants who are already qualified as graduate members of the CIPD are not eligible for the Human Resources Specialism. Applicants with a degree and substantial senior management or complex project management experience may find that the Gateway to Leadership** entry point to the NHS is more suitable. (**Please note that this programme is not currently running)
Applications usually need to be made by November prior to the year of entry.
For further information or to apply online please visit www.isthenhsforme.co.uk
c) Opportunities will exist for other applicants, although more senior posts may require experience of working in the NHS.
d) For more Senior HR roles as Assistant HR Director or Director of HR, a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) may be required.
Staff working in medical staffing roles may be required to have attended courses provided by the National Association of Medical Personnel Specialists (NAMPS). These courses are available at Foundation ("Understanding Medical Staffing") and Advanced Management level.
The Foundation course is aimed at newly appointed staff with limited experience. The course covers day-to-day essential knowledge and information required to do the job. The Advanced course is aimed at those staff with experience or in a senior post, covering the more complex areas of the job. NAMPS also has a newsletter and runs conferences for members.
Managers working in the general area of human resources will often need to have or be prepared to work towards gaining qualifications recognised by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).
CIPD qualifications are available at Level 3 Foundation, Level 5 Intermediate and Level 7 Advanced. You can study awards, certificates and diplomas at each of these levels. Most CIPD qualifications provide the underpinning knowledge towards CIPD professional membership (Associate, Chartered Member or Chartered Fellow).
Level 3 Foundation qualifications are for those aspiring to, or embarking on, a career in HR or Learning and Development (L&D); those working in the field of HR/L&D in a support role and wish to develop their knowledge and skills and those with responsibility for HR/L&D activities and decisions within an organisation without a specialist function.
Level 5 Intermediate qualifications are aimed at staff who are looking to develop a career in HR management and development; those working in the field of HR management and development and need to extend their knowledge and skills; those with responsibility for implementing HR policies and strategies and/or need to understand the role of HR in the wider organisational and environmental context.
Level 7 Advanced qualifications are for staff who have responsibility for HR decision making within an organisation at either operational, tactical or more strategic level; HR professionals in a team or HR functional management role who are seeking to enhance and develop their career; those with responsibilities for the HR function and activities within an organisation without a specialist function and for those who are independent or employed HR consultants who support organisations in meeting their goals.
CIPD qualifications are offered at a number of education institutions (including Universities) and on a range of modes of study including full-time, part-time, distance, flexible and open learning. For further details, contact the CIPD
NHS employees will usually be expected to undertake CIPD qualifications on a part-time basis and NHS employers will usually provide support in the form of some time off for study and/or assistance with course fees.
Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)
151 The Broadway
Tel: 020 8612 6200
Fax: 020 20 8612 6201
Healthcare People Management Association (HPMA)
HPMA Head Office
3 The Green
Tel: 0208 334 4530
Fax: 0208 334 4531
National Association of Medical Personnel Specialists (NAMPS)
NHS Graduate Management Training Schemes
Website: http://www.isthenhsforme.co.uk (For information on the HR Management Training Scheme)