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Policy on new workforce roles: a discussion paper

Policy on new workforce roles: a discussion paper
Policy on new workforce roles: a discussion paper
Addressing workforce issues has increasingly become a central feature of the organisation and management of public sector services internationally. The introduction of new work roles to public services is one approach advocated in response to recruitment and retention difficulties with professional staff and to increasingly complex services. This paper aims to critically examine UK's new roles policy in a health care context and explore its wider relevance by drawing on findings from an action research Ph.D. study aimed at exploring one such new role. This deliberately flexible role was held by individuals without a recognised qualification but study findings illustrate that, over the time, the role came to include the complex discharge planning work with patients previously carried out by registered nurses (RNs). The analysis presented highlights shortcomings in current new roles policy including the unacknowledged influence of competing policy goals; the erroneous assumption that defining who does what is clear-cut in practice; the lack of longer-term review of new roles; and the incompatibility between role flexibility and needs for role clarity. Policy makers, managers and practitioners are urged to acknowledge the subtleties and complexities of new work roles in the public sector highlighted by this study.
human resources, organisational change, organisational innovation, policy analysis, workforce
0020-7489
635-644
Bridges, Jackie
57e80ebe-ee5f-4219-9bbc-43215e8363cd
Meyer, Julienne
c4fc2052-b132-4749-9df3-41f012d7e90f
Bridges, Jackie
57e80ebe-ee5f-4219-9bbc-43215e8363cd
Meyer, Julienne
c4fc2052-b132-4749-9df3-41f012d7e90f

Bridges, Jackie and Meyer, Julienne (2007) Policy on new workforce roles: a discussion paper. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 44 (4), 635-644. (doi:10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2006.08.008). (PMID:17011562)

Record type: Article

Abstract

Addressing workforce issues has increasingly become a central feature of the organisation and management of public sector services internationally. The introduction of new work roles to public services is one approach advocated in response to recruitment and retention difficulties with professional staff and to increasingly complex services. This paper aims to critically examine UK's new roles policy in a health care context and explore its wider relevance by drawing on findings from an action research Ph.D. study aimed at exploring one such new role. This deliberately flexible role was held by individuals without a recognised qualification but study findings illustrate that, over the time, the role came to include the complex discharge planning work with patients previously carried out by registered nurses (RNs). The analysis presented highlights shortcomings in current new roles policy including the unacknowledged influence of competing policy goals; the erroneous assumption that defining who does what is clear-cut in practice; the lack of longer-term review of new roles; and the incompatibility between role flexibility and needs for role clarity. Policy makers, managers and practitioners are urged to acknowledge the subtleties and complexities of new work roles in the public sector highlighted by this study.

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More information

Published date: May 2007
Keywords: human resources, organisational change, organisational innovation, policy analysis, workforce
Organisations: Bio-Behavioural Sciences

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 360644
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/360644
ISSN: 0020-7489
PURE UUID: 98507e5f-ace0-426f-8db1-514b414a549f
ORCID for Jackie Bridges: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-6776-736X

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 20 Dec 2013 15:43
Last modified: 15 Aug 2019 00:38

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