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How do our NHS Wales approaches support (and challenge) us?

We know that our policies haven’t always helped us to have the best possible workplaces, or, experiences of work. The majority were designed for when things go wrong, treating everyone and every situation the same and assuming that we, as individuals and colleagues, couldn’t sort things out for ourselves if they did.

Health colleagues from across NHS Wales have started to change this by drafting new policies which will support everyone by encouraging healthier working relationships.

To help with this, we have to recognise that everyone is different and our individual situations constantly change. Sometimes we may need more support, whilst, at other times, we may need more challenge. Helping us to get this balance right relies on us engaging with the people we work with the closest, especially our managers. We know that being clear about some expectations/procedures is helpful, but having too many rules and trying to treat everyone the same makes for an unhealthy workplace.

We want our policies to acknowledge that things aren’t always perfect, so that when they aren’t, we feel we can, and should, do something about it without feeling that in some way this is criticising people or the systems we work within. Of course, we will also have some formal processes, but ideally, we should never have to use them.

Changes already being made include the introduction of a new Managing Attendance At Work Policy in 2018-19 and the replacing of our Grievance and Dignity At Work policies with a new approach to Respect and Resolution. Once we have developed a new shared set of expectations/ promises in 2021, we will use these as a foundation to update all of our policies.

Our NHS Wales People policies can be found here.