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Workforce planning

Providing system-wide leadership and oversight of workforce planning.


With over 1.3 million staff performing over 300 different types of jobs across more than a 1000 different employers, the NHS requires a robust workforce planning process to ensure we have staff in the right numbers, with the right skills and the right values and behaviours to deliver high quality care.

At Health Education England (HEE), part of our core role as an autonomous national body is to provide system wide leadership and oversight of workforce planning, education and training. We will work to ensure that healthcare staff are recruited in the right numbers with the right values and behaviours to support the delivery of excellent healthcare and drive improvement.

You can read more about our national workforce planning, including the Workforce Plan for England, on our national page.

Planning for Transformation

This year’s planning process will see a shift in approach as a result of the Five Year Forward View and the new regional planning processes for 2016 to 2020. This requires a new approach to planning with the development of sustainability and transformation plans (STPs).

STPs, made up of local health and care systems, can be described as “place-based, multi-year plans built around the needs of local populations”. Nationally they have come together to form 44 footprints while in London and KSS we have five and three respectively. Their aim is to enable transformative change and the implementation of the Five Year Forward View vision of better health and wellbeing; improved quality of care, and stronger NHS finance and efficiency. 

We will be working to establish HEE coordinated LWABs (local workforce action boards). The idea being that these boards will be made up from representatives across health and social care organisations within the STP and will be responsible for leading the workforce strand of the programme.

We are liaising closely with the National HEE Workforce Planning team in order to adopt the agreed approach to workforce planning for 2016-17.  Whilst education commissioning will no longer be the main driver of the plans, there is arguably a greater need than ever for robust workforce intelligence, not least to inform the STP process and the resulting requirement for investment in workforce transformation and development.

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