04th November 2014

Image: NSA Health logo.The National Skills Academy for Health has launched a new Employer Partner programme that will provide employers across the NHS, independent and voluntary sectors in England with free access to a suite of practical resources and services to help them develop and transform their healthcare support workers.

Under the Employer Partner programme, organisations and their staff will benefit from a range of NSA Health support services including:

  • Access to industry-leading resources via the Academy's ever-growing online Knowledge Exchange. The Knowledge Exchange publishes news, articles, research and curated resources to keep visitors informed about learning and development in the healthcare sector.


  • Help to set up and run apprenticeship, adult learning and pre-employment programmes. The Academy can help employers identify the best development courses to meet their needs – and direct employers to funding opportunities and local quality-assured learning providers.


  • Invitations to take part in the Academy's many webinars that explore today's crucial topics in learning and development enabling attendees to share their skills and learn from the experts.


  • Access to great learning programmes to address vital skills developments. The Academy provide a growing and sector-leading range of e-learning modules, aligned to the Core Skills Training Framework keeping employers compliant with statutory and mandatory training requirements. The Academy's expanding professional development programmes also encourage continuing skills development on a range of exciting and relevant topics.


  • Influence on national training developments – The Academy's work is heavily based on the thoughts, ideas and insights of its partner community. Partners will have the Academy's ear, and in turn the Academy will act on our partners' behalf, providing a voice for the sector to influence skills strategy at a national level.


  • The opportunity to ask questions, share ideas and gain new insight – day or night – in the Academy's online discussion forum. Whether people need a second opinion or want to debate a burning topic, the forum provides a simple and sociable way to bolster skill sets and keep knowledge up-to-date.


The Employer Partner section of the Academy's website contains further information on how to become an Employer Partner and the benefits the programme will bring to organisations and their staff.

Candace Miller, Director of the National Skills Academy for Health, said: "As an organisation that is fundamentally committed to the development of the support workforce, helping health and care employers large and small to secure high quality learning and skills for their staff, we are delighted to be rolling out our Employer Partner programme.

"We know that healthcare employers aim to provide fantastic care to all those they support, whether in an acute setting or within primary or community care environments. And we also know that investing in staff development is key to the quality of care provided. But it can be both complicated and time-consuming to find the support employers need, particularly for smaller businesses within the health and care community. That's why we have established our Employer Partner programme, increasing our ability to provide much needed information and learning support to all who want it.

"We are looking forward enormously to working together with all our Employer Partners to improve skills and develop excellence across the whole healthcare support workforce."

In addition to the benefits listed above, Employer Partners will also have full access to the newly-announced network of National Skills Academy for Health Excellence Centres. With investment support from the Department for Business Innovation & Skills (BIS), the Academy will be collaborating with healthcare employers to develop an initial network of six Excellence Centres that looks set to revolutionise the way in which local employers can access training and skills support at a grass roots level.

Each Excellence Centre will act as a "hub" to bring together like-minded healthcare businesses across a region and encourage more consistent and better quality training through strong collaborations between local employers and education and training providers. Together the organisations making up each Centre will design and deliver new learning resources for healthcare support staff, share training expertise and make best use of skills development facilities.

Running alongside the Employer Partner programme, the National Skills Academy for Health recently launched its Delivery Partner initiative. Training providers with a proven track record of delivering high quality training to the health sector are eligible to join the scheme and successful applicants will receive a range of benefits including business referrals, access to the exclusive Delivery Partners' website and a discount on the fee for achieving the Skills for Health Quality Mark.