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Creating your Primary Care Network Digital & Transformation Lead job description & 90-day objectives

Updated: Mar 24

1. Introduction and disclaimers


On the 26th of September, NHSE released their winter planning guidance, announcing the introduction of the Primary Care Network Digital Transformation Lead.


NHSE has advised that job descriptions will be imminently shared to provide further guidance, but for now, here is our take for you to modify and suit your needs.


In this blog, we provide you with the following;


  1. A draft job description ( to get you started)

  2. Some objectives to guide the first 90 days in this role

  3. Five resources to support either those who have recently been appointed or are interested in applying for the role of the Digital and Transformation Lead

  4. Seven interview questions to help you with your Digital and Transformation Lead recruitment


DISCLAIMER | THIS IS AN EXAMPLE

This particular job description is separate from the PCN Manager role and responsibilities, but I know that many networks will combine the roles. This is just an example, and we are not saying this is what everyone should do.

In this example, the digital and transformation lead will report to the PCN Manager. Again, this is just an example; we are not saying this is what everyone should do.

There are many job descriptions you can review on NHS jobs to give you other ideas.

2. Is it Digital Transformation Lead or Digital AND Transformation Lead?


My advice... you choose. The guidance does not dictate either or.

In this example, I included the AND.


Let's jump in!



3. Job Title


Primary Care Network Digital and Transformation Lead


4. Salary


NHS Band 8A starting at £48,526


5. Line Management


  • This role holds no line management responsibilities

  • The Digital and Transformation Lead will report to the PCN Manager

6. Objective of the role


The objective of the Digital and Transformation Lead is to lead and develop a strategic plan to build a robust digital infrastructure for ABC PCN and to implement this, which;


  1. Is underpinned by a quality improvement methodology

  2. Drives integrated working

  3. Drives efficiency and reduces duplication

  4. Reduces variation between practices

  5. Is underpinned with easy-to-understand data packs to support decision-making that includes but is not limited to demand, capacity, utilisation data, staff and patient experience

  6. Builds staff skills and capabilities

  7. Enhances patient access whilst protecting our workforce

  8. Takes into consideration the digital maturity of the PCN

  9. Takes into consideration the population's health needs and health inequalities within our community

  10. To improve digital accessibility for our patients




7. Main Responsibilities


Leadership and Management

  1. To develop and maintain an in-depth understanding of the PCN digital infrastructure and business intelligence tools

  2. To procure and manage digital tools for the PCN which is aligned to a framework of fundamental principles

  3. To proactively project manage all digital projects and also evaluate the effectiveness of the intervention

  4. To ensure all initiatives are supported by a clinical champion and practice management

  5. To lead the development and implementation of digital transformation bids

  6. To ensure all staff receive training on the digital tools within the PCN

  7. To ensure the induction of all new members of staff receive training and resources on tools available

  8. To ensure all initiatives are fully scoped and underpinned by a quality improvement methodology

  9. To remain up to date with the national and local PCN guidance.

Governance

  1. To create and maintain accurate documentation in relation to finances, standard operating procedures, contracts, contacts and decision-making, which is accessible centrally.

Communication, relationship building and presentation skills

  1. To work in partnership with the PCN leadership and management team

  2. To identify and develop relationships with practice staff, private providers, the local primary care team, neighbouring PCNs and other key partners to enable good working relationships and promote and share best practice

  3. To deliver technical information in a non-technical and engaging way to a range of stakeholders


8. Equality and diversity


The post-holder will support the equality, diversity and rights of patients, carers and colleagues by:

  1. Acting in a way that recognises the importance of people’s rights, interpreting them in a way that is consistent with practice procedures, policies, and current legislation

  2. Respecting the privacy, dignity, needs and beliefs of patients, carers and colleagues

  3. Behaving in a manner which is welcoming

  4. Behaving in a manner that is non-judgmental and respects circumstances, feelings, priorities and rights.


9. The first 90 days


In the first 90 days, we are expected in this role to;


  • Work closely with the PCN leadership and management team to understand the overall PCN strategy, which will underpin the digital infrastructure required.


  • Conduct a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats ( SWOT) analysis of the current digital infrastructure of the PCN. This analysis will involve speaking with members of the PCN team.


  • Review what subscriptions are in place and compile their due dates for renewal and cost to the PCN.


  • Create a framework which encompasses fundamental principles to align and focus the PCN digital infrastructure, which may incorporate but not be limited to:

  1. Value for money

  2. Ease of implementation

  3. Level of interoperability

  4. Key performance indications

  5. Overall outcome


  • Develop and present a finalised digital and transformation strategy and implementation plan.





10. Key Attributes

  1. The ability to work calmly under pressure

  2. The ability to process and manage conflicting advice and priorities

  3. The ability to influence decisions without line management authority

  4. The ability to adapt your leadership and management style to different situations

  5. To deliver technical information in a non-technical and engaging way to a range of stakeholders

  6. Patience

  7. To be able to able to work as part of a dispersed team

  8. To be positive and solution focussed

  9. Commitment to professional development

  10. The ability to design a manageable workload


11. Essential Experience

  1. Experienced in delivering multiple programmes of IT projects through the entire project lifecycle.

  2. Good understanding of the Digital agenda within the NHS and Social Care or Care Sector

  3. Experience in delivering IT projects across multiples sites and departments


12. Desirable experience

The ideal candidate will be able to evidence;

  1. Experience in delivering multiple programmes of IT projects through the entire project lifecycle in a health or care setting

  2. Education to master’s degree level or equivalent professional experience

  3. Quality improvement training

  4. Project management qualification, such as PRINCE or equivalent experience


13. Digital Transformation Resources


If you are interested in applying for a PCN Digital and Transformation Lead role or have recently been appointed, you may want to check out the following resources.


Please click on the titles underlined, which are hyperlinked to the resources.



This resource highlights the importance of

  • Good user experiences

  • Understanding people’s needs

  • The importance of a shared language which is clear, precise and accessible


This resource highlight five core steps to help you role your digital transformation project.



This paper provides an example of a large-scale evaluation. Whilst you will not need to undertake a significant review like this at a PCN level, I have highlighted this resource for you to pick out some lessons learnt to help shape your intervention.



This report from the King Fund highlights key themes to enable successful digital change management.

All of these resources will help you gain a good understanding of the opportunities and barriers at play when it comes to developing new ways of working underpinned by technology.


Recruitment panels should want to see evidence of this understanding in the job interview.


14. Interview Questions (To get you started)


Presentation

Please deliver a 10-minute presentation of the key themes that will enable digital transformation in our Primary Care Network. Please note the presentation should be specific to our Primary Care Network.


Interview Questions

  1. What attracts you to our Primary Care Network?

  2. What three main challenges do you anticipate in executing this role?

  3. What experience and expertise do you bring when facilitating IT transformation?

  4. What is your approach to leading digital transformation, and what methodologies have you used in the past?

  5. Please provide an example of the most successful digital initiative you have led.

  6. Please provide an example of a digital initiative that has failed, and what were your lessons learned?

  7. Please provide an example of when you managed to change someone's mind who was initially opposed to your suggestion/ plan.

For more insights on this role, check out our YouTube video and the blog titled Do we need a Digital and Transformation Lead?




We hope this is helpful.




Whilst we share a lot of information in our blogs, there is so much more, and for those of you who are looking to invest in your professional development and the performance of your network, our programmes are full of tools and templates and master classes.


We also have over 250 podcast episodes in our catalogue as well as our YouTube channel to watch updates.


Lastly, we lead and manage PCNs too. We are in the thick of it and experience the good and those days when you think 😫!



 

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Find out more about THC Primary Care at: https://www.thcprimarycare.co.uk


And follow Tara on Twitter: @tarahumphreyy


 

About the Author


I'm Tara; I am the founder of THC Primary Care, an award-winning healthcare consultancy specialising in Primary Care Network Management and the host of the Business of Healthcare Podcast, where we have now published over 290 episodes.


I have over 20 years of project management and business development experience across the private and public sectors, and I have supported over 120 PCNs by providing interim management, training and consultancy.


I have managed teams across multiple sites and countries; I have an MBA in Leadership and Management in Healthcare, I'm published in the London Journal of Primary Care, and I am the author of over 250 blogs.


I have 3 children. My eldest has Asthma, my middle child has a kidney condition called Nephrotic Syndrome, and my youngest daughter has Type 1 Diabetes, so outside of work, healthcare plays a huge role in my life.




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