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Lead Freedom to Speak Up Guardian

Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
£66,718 to £76,271 a year incl. HCAS
Closing date
27 Sep 2023

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Other Health Profession
Band 8B
Contract Type
Full Time
Moorfields is seeking a new independent Lead Freedom to Speak up Guardian, to lead and manage the Freedom to Speak Up service across the whole trust network, across all sites, taking a proactive, inclusive approach to resolving Freedom to Speak up concerns.

The Lead Freedom to Speak Up Guardian will be the expert and professional resource on all aspects of practice relating to the Freedom to Speak Up agenda and associated cultural change in line with our Trust Values. They will encourage the embedding of best practice to enable and support staff to raise concerns where they see evidence of risk, wrong-doing, unsafe practice and staff impact.

They will focus on ensuring that colleagues feel able to speak up without fear of reprisal to protect patient safety, improve the experience of workers and promote learning and improvement.

This is a high profile, influential role, integral to promoting a culture of transparency to support the delivery of high-quality compassionate patient care. It contributes directly to ensuring the safety of our patients and carers, and the wellbeing of our workers, contractors, students and visitors.

The Lead Guardian operates independently, impartially, and objectively to support the Trust's aim to improve openness and transparency, encouraging staff to speak up safely and promoting a listening and learning culture. Excellent communication skills are required for this role.

Main duties of the job

The role will involve working with the executive lead for the service and the executive team on the development and delivery of the Freedom to Speak Up Strategy, ensuring alignment with the Trust's vision on fairness and inclusivity.

The Freedom to Speak Up Guardian role will lead on a range of initiatives to achieve:
  • A culture of speaking up throughout the organisation and wider NHS
  • Speaking up processes that are effective and continuously improved
  • Staff having the motivation and capability to speak up effectively, managers having the capability to support those who are speaking up, and that all concerns are managed confidentially and rapidly
  • Supporting staff appropriately when they speak up
  • Full divisional management, monitoring and oversight of Freedom to Speak Up concerns
  • Fully sighting and engaging of the Board about Freedom to Speak Up matters and issues
  • Assurance of safety and quality
  • Agreeing and monitoring service KPIs, and creating improvement plans where needed in response to variation from expected outcomes
  • Collaborative working with the Workforce and OD function to improve staff experience in speaking up.

About us

We have transformed the Freedom to Speak up service at Moorfields from a voluntary staff service to now be led by an internal independent Guardian, supported by voluntary staff Guardians and a network of champions. We have enhanced the service further through an electronic speaking up system that can be used anonymously. The post holder is accountable to the Chief Executive and line management is achieved through the Chief Nurse and Director of Allied Health Professionals. The Freedom to Speak up service demonstrates excellence in upholding and living the values and staff behaviours within Moorfields.

Based in the vibrant and fast developing high tech quarter centred around City Road, Hoxton and Shoreditch, we have:
  • A lively working atmosphere
  • Easy and quick transport links
  • Career development opportunities for staff at all levels
  • A range of attractive benefits that include eye care, generous holidays, and an excellent pension scheme.

Job description

Job responsibilities


This post will be subject to a probationary period of 6 months.

During the probationary period, your suitability for continued employment will be assessed and provided a satisfactory standard is achieved and maintained, your employment will be confirmed.The probationary period may be extended or your employment terminated either during or at the end of probation, in line with the trust Probationary Policy. For the duration of the probation period, the notice period will be in line with contractual obligations on either side.

Lead the Freedom to Speak up service ensuring it is accessible to staff and that concerns are dealt with rapidly and effectively and there is a high level of staff satisfaction. This includes managing the voluntary Guardians and the champions network.
  • Provide confidential, impartial advice and support to people who are able to speak up without fear of reprisal, escalating concerns where appropriate. The post holder will be party to highly sensitive information.
  • Take immediate appropriate action when matters that people are speaking up about indicate that safety and quality to patients or staff may be compromised.
  • Support the development of a working environment and open culture which fosters high morale and commitment among all colleagues and promotes their well-being.
  • Lead and deliver the strategic needs of the service via a dedicated Freedom to Speak up Strategy which links to other strategies.
  • Work in partnership to ensure speaking up policies and processes are effective and consistently improved and well communicated.
  • Work with the Chief Nurse and Director of Allied Health Professionals, and link to the Workforce and OD function to support the development and implementation of the Freedom to Speak Up agenda consistent with direction and guidance from the National Guardians Office and the cultural priorities of Moorfields.
  • Lead on the development of policies, processes and procedures in relation to the Freedom to Speak Up service, ensuring they are clear and readily available to all colleagues and that they meet national standards and are regularly reviewed and updated.
  • Lead on delivering a service that meets its KPIs which are outcome and process focussed. Also, that the service is continuously improving and seeking new service indicators.
  • Lead on the development of a service communications strategy and plan, in collaboration with the Trust Communication function, that meets the wider needs of the organisation and the needs of individuals who raise concerns. Particularly ensure actions and learning is shared.
  • Lead on the triangulation and comparison of data in a timely way which is also part of an active system of performance management through divisional and executive responsibilities.
  • Ensure that assurance mechanisms are in place via People and Culture Committee and Trust Board.
  • Lead on developing and delivering resources and training to ensure that all staff are clear about what concerns they can raise and how to raise them. Ensure all managers are clear about their roles and responsibilities when investigating and handling Freedom to Speak Up concerns and are supported to do so effectively.
  • Lead on ensuring that groups that face particular barriers to speaking up have the knowledge and support they need, and issues raised are used as opportunities for learning and improvement.
  • Develop strong and open working relationships with the Chief Executive, Chair, NED responsible for Freedom to Speak Up, other NEDs and Executive Directors, with direct access to senior leaders as required.
  • Lead on compliance with the National Guardian Office (NGO) guidance and reporting requirements as required by the NHS standard contract.
  • Lead on preparing and presenting reports for Trust Board and People and Culture Committee, as per the national guidance to provide assurance on the delivery of the speaking up agenda.
  • Lead the operation of a champions network in line with national guidance, ensuring that Freedom to Speak Up champions have the knowledge and experience to carry out their duties providing support to staff and escalating concerns to Guardians as required.
  • Lead/support teams/departments with the appointment and training of Freedom to Speak Up Champions.
  • Coordinate and support the activities of the Freedom to Speak Up Champions, ensuring their wellbeing, and identification and provision of training and development needs of the team and individuals as necessary.
  • Lead on organising sessions, events and other activities to promote the speaking up agenda.
  • Contribute to business planning to ensure the priorities and objectives of the Freedom to Speak Up service are reflected including any budget requirements.
  • Manage the Freedom to Speak Up service budget.
  • Manage the contract with the external supplier of the reporting system.

Communications and Working Relationships
  • Operate independently, impartially and objectively, whilst working in partnership with individuals and groups throughout the Trust
  • Lead on ensuring Freedom to Speak Up messages and details of the guardian role are regularly communicated across the Trust, including feedback on matters that colleagues are speaking up about, being mindful of preserving confidentiality where needed, and detailing action taken in response to these.
  • Provide expert advice to colleagues about Freedom to Speak Up and its services.
  • Build effective relationships with colleagues at all levels through open communication and constructive feedback.
  • Create and promote a secure environment for employees to raise concerns, building trust and rapport to promote honest discussion and developing a coaching style to facilitate self-reflection and empowerment.
  • Develop, review, update and support the implementation of relevant national and local policies and procedures to support the freedom to speak up agenda
  • Contribute and support the regional and national Freedom to Speak up Guardian Network.
  • Liaise with NHS England about Freedom to Speak Up as required.

Other Duties
  • Take responsibility for continuous personal and professional development taking an active part in learning opportunities whenever possible.
  • Attendance at key committees and meetings to offer staff perspective and advice on the ability of staff to raise concerns and feel safe doing so.
  • Promote a learning and just culture in response to the concerns raised by staff.

Person Specification

Education/ Qualifications


  • Essential


  • Desirable



  • Essential


  • Desirable

Knowledge and Skills


  • Essential

Employer details

Employer name

Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust


Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

162 City Road



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