The NHS Trust has been rated ‘Good’ in all areas of their education and training programme for apprentices.
Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (GMMH) has been rated ‘Good’, following an inspection by Ofsted in May 2022.
GMMH - which provides inpatient, community and specialist mental health services across Greater Manchester and the wider North – is an accredited ‘employer provider’, offering apprenticeships for staff to gain further knowledge, skills and a formal qualification at levels 2 and 3.
In a report published on 18 July 2022, Ofsted has praised all areas of the Trust’s education and skills offer. These areas, all of which have been rated ‘good’ are:
The quality of education
Behaviour and attitudes
Leadership and management
The regulator found that apprentices find their experience ‘rewarding and empowering’, and are ‘passionate’ and ‘proud’ to work at GMMH and the health sector.
The report also states that GMMH has developed an ‘inclusive culture’, and that ‘apprentices demonstrate GMMH values of integrity and respect while caring for patients.’
Several areas of good practice are highlighted, including:
Opportunities for apprentices to broaden their learning beyond GMMH’s in-house offer (through volunteering, the national numeracy challenge and attending external courses).
Opportunities for apprentices to be promoted.
Processes to make sure apprentices feel safe at all times.
Individual support and feedback from coaches.
Using engaging learning methods such as quizzes and reflection.
A strong focus on developing apprentices’ confidence, independence and resilience.
Referring to the overall apprenticeship offer at GMMH, the report states:
“Apprenticeships form an important part of the wider workforce development strategy at GMMH to fill recruitment gaps and improve staff retention. The curriculum enables apprentices to perform their job roles effectively. They treat patients as individuals, for example by adapting their non-verbal communication and tone of voice. The apprenticeship prepares apprentices for the next step in their career.”
The report also highlights three recommendations to further improve apprenticeships at GMMH; focusing on setting individualised targets, providing independent careers guidance, and strengthening the process for governors to challenge and hold to account leaders and managers for the quality of education provided.
Andrew Maloney, Executive Director of HR and Deputy Chief Executive at Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (GMMH) said:
Developing our staff to gain the skills, knowledge and behaviours they need to fulfil their potential, and provide the best possible care to our service users, is a key priority for GMMH.
We are delighted to have received such positive feedback from Ofsted, reflecting the hard work and dedication of our Apprenticeship Team. We are thankful for this, and for the commitment and passion that managers from across the Trust have demonstrated in supporting their team members to grow. We continue to be so impressed by and grateful for our apprentices’ dedication to our service users and the care they provide.
We are now looking forward to implementing the report’s recommendations, to ensure we continue a high standard of education, training and support for all our much-valued apprentices.
Michael Cusick is currently undertaking a Healthcare Support Worker Level 2 apprenticeship at GMMH. He said:
I absolutely love my role and apprenticeship. I love working with people and caring for them, it’s just so nice to be able to do that.
This is a brand-new way of working for me - I used to be in the building trade, but I decided I wanted to help people. So I decided to go for it. The teaching on the apprenticeship has been such quality. I’m coming towards the end now, and hope to go on to do my Nursing Associate training afterwards. The Trust has been so supportive in enabling me to do this - I want to thank the apprenticeship team and everyone who has supported me.”
Michael Mabochrist is currently undertaking a Business Administrator Level 3 Apprenticeship at GMMH. He said:
I am currently working as a Citywide Administrator, and I believe that doing an apprenticeship will help me progress in my role and career.
The apprenticeship team have been great – they have been very supportive, ensuring I have a dedicated study day alongside my working days.
My advice to anyone thinking about doing an apprenticeship would be to go for it! You’ll learn a lot and will have all the help and support you need.”