Results published for NHS National Staff Survey

The results of the NHS National Staff Survey 2016 have been published for Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, which provides community, mental health, specialist and children’s services across the county.

The results highlighted a number of areas where the Trust are performing well, including reporting issues, appraisals and staff motivation and also highlighted some areas where there are improvements to be made, including communication, incidents of harassment, and flexible working.

Claire Molloy, Chief Executive of CPFT said: “It is a very challenging time for people working in the NHS. In line with many organisations, we are facing financial pressures and have some areas where recruitment has been more difficult. Over the last year there has also been a lot of focus on service change in Cumbria to address both our quality and financial issues. We recognise the uncertainty this will have created for staff, but are very grateful for their continued hard work and commitment. This is reflected positively in a number of the indicators but we know in this context, we have further work to do to ensure we continue to improve the working environment for people who work here.”

Overall staff engagement was rated 3.83 on a scale of 1-5 (where 5 is the highest level of engagement). This is in line with the national average of 3.80 and the same as the Trust scored last year. Below are the 5 areas where the Trust ranked the highest when compared to other similar Trusts, and the lowest.

Top 5 ranking scores

  1. 96% of staff who witnessed errors, near misses or incidents in the last month reported them (national average 93%)
  2. Staff motivation at work is rated 4 out of 5 (national average 3.94)
  3. 9% of staff experienced discrimination at work in the last 12 months (national average 11%)  
  4. 90% of staff believe that the organisation provides equal opportunities for career progression or promotion (national average 88% )
  5. Effective team working is rated 3.87 out of 5, the same as the national average.

Claire explains “The number of staff reporting errors is a positive reflection of the work we have done to improve reporting processes and share lessons learnt. This is an area we have improved in over the past year, with 96% of errors reported compared to 88% in 2015. Errors and near misses do happen, and it’s important that staff feel supported to speak up so that we can make improvements and minimise the risk of these errors happening in future.”

Bottom 5 ranking scores

  1. 34% of staff experienced harassment, bullying or abuse from patients, relatives or the public in last 12 months (national average 28%)
  2. 24% of staff reported good communication between senior management and staff (national average 35%)  
  3. 27% of staff experienced harassment, bullying or abuse from staff in last 12 months (national average 21%)
  4. 53% of staff are satisfied with the opportunities for flexible working patterns (national average 58%)  
  5. 27% of staff witnessed potentially harmful errors, near misses or incidents in last month (national average 24%)

Lynn Marsland, Director of Workforce and Organisational Development said:  “There are some areas where as an organisation we need to improve. The introduction of our new Staff Health and Wellbeing Strategy is a key part of this, and now we have the results of the national staff survey we will be looking at specific areas of concern and making plans to address these.”

“The Staff Health and Wellbeing Strategy was developed based on staff feedback, and builds on the good work that is already going on in some areas of the Trust. The strategy aims to inspire staff to take greater interest in their own health and wellbeing, while providing the opportunities to do so and creating a culture of wellness.” 

In most areas, the Trust scored similar to the 2015 results, but there were a few areas where the results were significantly different. The number of staff having appraisal in last 12 months has increased from 84% in 2015 to 91% in 2016. However the quality of appraisals was reported to have reduced, with a score of 2.95 out of 5 for 2016 compared to 3.15 in 2015. This may be due to the Trust changing the appraisal system last year, meaning it was the first time staff had carried out appraisals using a values-based approach. The Trust has established an appraisal window to ensure that staff have their appraisal following the Trust’s Business Objectives being set for that year – aligning their development conversations to the wider work of the Trust.

The number of staff experiencing physical violence from patients, relatives or the public in the last 12 months has increased from 12% in 2015 to 17%, and the number of staff experiencing harassment, bullying or abuse from staff rose from 21% to 27%.

Claire Molloy added: “The health, wellbeing and safety of our staff is a priority for the Trust – I’m personally committed to ensuring that we continue to tackle the issues that have come out of these results.”

1,250 staff from Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust were asked to complete the NHS National Staff Survey 2016 by Quality Health. The response rate was 43% (529 responses). This is similar to the overall response rate of 44%.

The full results are available now at