Effective inductions ensure that new joiners to the mental health support workforce feel welcomed, understand what is expected of them, and settle in quickly. Managers (with support from their HR teams) should take some time to prepare an induction programme for their staff and it is recommended to make tailor made versions for specific groups such as promoted staff, job sharers, those new to the NHS, older workforce, younger workforce etc.
An employee’s first impressions of an organisation have a significant impact on their integration within the team and job satisfaction. Induction is an opportunity for an organisation to welcome their new recruit, help them settle in and ensure they have the knowledge and support they need to perform their role. For an employer, effective induction may also affect turnover, absenteeism and employer brand.
There is no universal, mandatory standard for the education and training of clinical support workers in England but many NHS Trusts have adopted the voluntary Care Certificate as part of their inductions (Nuffield Trust, 2021, pg. 4).
When mental health support staff were asked for their views on how their learning and development opportunities might be enhanced, an improved induction was one of the requests (King's College London, 2021, pg. 25).
The Healthcare Support Worker 2021 Programme reported that between April 2018 and November 2020 77% of leavers had less than 5 years’ service and 40% of these left with less than one years’ service. They also report that under 30s have the highest leaver and turnover rates. In addition, band 2s have a higher risk of leaving during the first 3 months and band 3s are more likely to leave within the first 12 months. To respond to these challenges, they are looking to influence recruitment and induction as key factors. Refer to the Recruitment section of this toolkit to find out more about key issues.