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RRDN Health and Care Research Director (Medical)

University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust
Depending on experience Dependent on experience - per annum
Closing date
19 Mar 2024

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Healthcare scientist, Researcher
Contract Type
Part Time
We are looking for an experienced, motivated and innovative leader working at a Consultant level with experience in this area, to help us to develop and deliver ambitious plans for effective services as part of the soon to be established East Midlands RRDN. Along with 11 other Regional Delivery Networks and a Network Co-ordinating Centre, this will form the NIHR Research Delivery Network.

As the RRDN is currently transitioning from the Clinical Research Network, your experience and skills in times of transformation and change will be critical. We will require expert leadership to deliver service transformation, people change and continual support for stakeholders and partners as we collectively embrace these changes to make our strategic ambitions become a reality.

Working across a networked environment will be essential, with skills to understand and work across multiple complex agendas and develop strong partnerships across our system. The RRDN will require influencing and negotiation skills and will seek to build strong and lasting partnerships which will provide increasing research opportunities across diverse communities to help address complex and ever evolving health and care challenges.

The role will report to the East Midlands RDN Director and provide visible, dynamic and effective senior leadership. You will also work closely with the RRDN Health and Care Research Director, Strategic Development Director and Operations Director as part of the Leadership Team.

Main duties of the job

In collaboration with the RRDN Strategic Development & Operations Directors, the RRDN Health & Care ResearchDirector will assist the development of the RRDN 3 yearStrategic Plan. This plan will be in line with the national RDNstrategic priorities and initiatives but translated into deliverablepriorities for the RRDN region.

Working with the clinical communities of practice, they will identifyworkforce development opportunities and thereby assist inincreasing the research capacity and capability within the regionand nationally, with particular emphasis on addressing the needsof the life sciences industry.

In collaboration with the RRDN Operations Directors they willco-ordinate the provision of expert proactive advice regardingstudy design to optimise deliverability and assist in theidentification of sites and Principal Investigators, and providereactive advice and support where study delivery or performanceis an issue.

The RRDN Health & Care Research Director will work with thenew NIHR Regional Research Leadership Offices (RRLOs) todevelop complementary activities regarding strategic workforcedevelopment for the aligned aim of increasing research capacityand capability, the RRLO having a focus on the clinical academiccommunity.

Alongside their regional responsibilities, the RRDN Health & CareResearch Director will co-develop and lead nationalprogrammes of work in collaboration with the RDN Co-ordinatingCentre (RDNCC).

About us

The Network is hosted by the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust and covers the East Midlands footprint, with travel expected across all regional sites, outside of the region and to national meetings. We are actively promoting flexible working options, helping you to manage a work/life balance and operate a hybrid/flexible working policy, with a minimum of 2-3 days expected to be site based per week.

Our new strategy, 'Leading in healthcare, trusted in communities' was developed with the support and feedback of colleagues, patients, and partners and is our compass for the next seven years (2023-2030).

We have four primary goals:
  • high-quality care for all,
  • being a great place to work,
  • partnerships for impact, and
  • research and education excellence

And we will embed health equality in all we do - taking active steps to reduce the avoidable differences in healthcare that some people face, working in partnership with communities.

Our strategy is underpinned by new values and we will work to ensure they are an everyday reality for all:
  • we are compassionate,
  • we are proud,
  • we are inclusive, and
  • we are one team

This is an exciting moment as we look to the future with clarity on what we already do well and where we need to focus our energies to make an even bigger difference for the people we serve.

Job description

Job responsibilities

Key Result Areas:
  • Strategic Leadership
  • Business Planning
  • Operational Management
  • Organisational Development
  • Performance Management
  • Life Sciences Industry
  • Financial Management Responsibilities
  • Continuous Improvement
  • NHS and Non-NHS Engagement
  • Ensuring Patient, Carer and Public Impact on Delivery of RDN Strategy
  • Corporate Governance

Please refer to Job Description for further details in these key result areas.

Primary Working Relationships:
  • NIHR RDN Executive Team (including RRDN Strategic Development Director and RRDN Operations Director)
  • NIHR RDN Senior Management Team
  • National Specialty Leads
  • NIHR Nursing & Midwifery Office
  • RRDN Speciality Leads
  • RRDN Settings Leads
  • Peer NIHR RRDN Health and Care Research Directors
  • Senior leaders within the RRDN region for other NIHR infrastructure and entities, NHS England, Health Innovation Networks (HINs), Integrated Care Boards (ICBs)/Integrated Care Systems (ICSs), NHS Trusts, Primary Care providers, Universities, local authorities, and other providers of health and social care services

Person Specification

Training and Qualifications


  • Professional registration as a Medical Doctor
  • Masters level qualification or equivalent
  • Management qualification



  • Comprehensive understanding of research, the NHS and the wider health and care system including associated responsibilities to the public and patients
  • Experience of working in the health and care research sector, the health and social care service sector or academic environment at a senior level
  • Comprehensive understanding of the UK research pathway and funding
  • Experience of co-creating and implementing strategies to build capacity and capability for the delivery of health and care research
  • Experience in the design and leadership of health or care research in the UK
  • Experience of developing and implementing remedial actions to support study deliverability
  • Experience of identifying the need for and developing professional workforce development needs
  • Professional research leadership, both strategic and operational at a senior level
  • Experience of working across complex organisational structures and and legislative framework for clinical research in the NHS Executive level experience Experience of being a Chief or Principal Investigator for a health or care research study in the UK Job Title: Date Finalised: Page 11 effective matrix management
  • Knowledge of national systems, structures and processes for supporting clinical research in NHS and non-NHS settings
  • Experience of working collaboratively and in partnership with other organisations, with demonstrable experience of delivery across organisational boundaries
  • Evidence of managing effective collaborations and partnerships
  • Good understanding of performance management techniques
  • Political astuteness and understanding of the health & social care context
  • Comprehensive knowledge of programme sponsorship and management
  • Experience of leading continuous improvement


  • Understanding of governance and legislative framework for clinical research in the NHS
  • Executive level experience
  • Experience of being a Chief or Principal Investigator for a health or care research study in the UK

Communication and Relationships Skills


  • Proven interpersonal skills to work with clinical and management colleagues at all levels across a range of organisations and the ability to develop strong working relationships with senior stakeholders
  • Strong external communications skills in a politically sensitive environment with knowledge of and experience in handling media relations
  • Ability to communicate highly complex, sensitive or contentious information orally and in writing, both internally and externally, to a range of audiences
  • Extensive experience of delivering presentations to large groups of stakeholders in often pressured and politically sensitive environments to a high standard (Board level quality)
  • Ability to grasp critical issues and distil them into clear arguments/cases and be able to articulate these verbally or in written form
  • Acts as a champion for patients and their interests, ensuring the patients' voice has an impact on RDN activities
  • Works well with others, is positive and helpful, listens, involves, respects and learns from the contribution of others

Analytical and Judgement Skills


  • Ability to make decisions autonomously, when required, on difficult issues
  • Ability to analyse and interpret highly complex information to make judgements regarding a range of highly complex management issues
  • Highly motivated with the ability to lead and inspire others
  • Proven leadership skills in the management of change
  • Ability to deal with challenging situations in a formal setting
  • Strong problem solving skills
  • Ability to work independently
  • Ability to understand the long term or widespread implications of decisions
  • Good IT skills, particularly in use of Web applications and MS Office applications
  • Ability to use Google Suite products
  • Commitment to supporting the development of staff and understanding of workforce planning
  • Flexible approach to working
  • Attention to detail
  • Outcomes focussed
  • Consistently looks to improve what they do and seeks out innovation
  • Self-awareness with regard to emotional intelligence, biases and sensitivities

Planning and Organisation Skills


  • Highly developed leadership, strategic thinking and planning skills with the ability to demonstrate these in highly political environments
  • Ability to plan, manage, adjust and deliver complex projects involving multiple agencies and individuals and a broad range of activities to tight deadlines

Employer details

Employer name

University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust


Leicester Royal Infirmary/Queens Medical Centre (Nottingham)

Knighton Street Outpatients, Infirmary Square



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