Background In 2022 we found ourselves facing all of the well documented post-pandemic recruitment and retention challenges for Registered Nurses.
Aims To develop a pipeline of future talent within the student body and create additional positive PR for the hospice to support our employer brand.
Methods We developed a bursary/sponsorship offer of a financial sum along with engagement with the organisation (education, placements, bank work, contact with service leads), in return for the student accepting any job offer we make upon their qualification. We worked with our local university to publicise this offer to their students. We held a recruitment process including presentation and interview with service leads and made offers to four students.
Results Four students joined the programme (one dropped out for logistical reasons after joining our bank and realising the journey was too far), and our first student will start working with us in Autumn 2023. We have a further four students studying with us, and are recruiting additional students this year through two local universities. Students have joined us as bank staff and/or on placement. One student set up a joint university end of life care masterclass for their students, delivered by us. We received fantastic publicity from our local press, and both we and the students have benefited from the relationship. We also received funding from a private donor to cover the cost of the sponsorship. One of our students suggested that we allocate a mentor to them in their final year to support with their learning and qualification, which we have adopted.
Conclusion So far this has proven to be a successful recruitment strategy for us and we look forward to continuing to work with our universities to promote palliative care as a career route for Registered nurses.
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