The Chief Executive of NHS Employers, Dean Royles, is a great advocate of social media.
He's also incidentally a great advocate of Equality and Diversity. I know him well from the days when he was the Director of Workforce and Education for the now-disbanded NHS North West Strategic Health Authority and he really understands why equality strategy is so important to a diverse organisation serving an even more diverse population. However, I digress...
NHS Employers is the voice of the hundreds of NHS organisations which, together, employ 1.4 million staff in the UK (the NHS is the world's third largest employer). They lead debate on issues such as pay and contracts and defining best practice for the workforce. This means they also have a big responsibility for equality issues within the workforce.
Communications is obviously central to the mission of such an organisation.
This is why it is good that Dean is such an enthusiastic advocate for embracing anything that extends the reach of the organisation's messages. He leads by example, as an enthusiastic Twitter user, for instance. Follow @NHSE_Dean. He tweets about his interests as well as about the latest buzz in management topics.
Dean believes strongly that managers and staff in systems like the NHS should use social media and he is keen to slay the myths which he believes get in the way.
Given this mission to reach out and communicate it is not surprising that Dean has steered his organisation to embrace any technologies that work. First came webinars and video. And now the organisation is embracing Podcasts too.
Characteristically Dean leads from the front, showing one of many ways that the medium can be used to get the ear of the thousands of managers in the NHS system. His management team are now following suit, with a growing programme of shows on their own specialist topics.
The advantages of Podcasting for an organisation like the NHS is that it is a medium that can reach people 'hands-free' even when they are doing something else. Managers can listen with headphones on their office PC, of course, but podcasts can also be heard on smartphones too … so people can tune in whilst commuting, taking a jog, or doing the gardening.
There are several ways to obtain the NHS Employers Podcasts.
- You can listen to Dean's own blogs using the widget above. This updates every time he releases a new show.
- If you have iTunes on your computer then search for 'NHS Employers' in the Podcast section of the store or take a short cut via this link.
- If you have the Podcasts app on your iPhone or iPad just search for 'NHS Employers'
- If you have the SoundCloud app on your iPhone or Android device you can search there for 'NHS Employers' too, or visit the web site.
It's early days for the content … the organisation is still only just scratching the surface of what it can potentially do with this medium. However, it's worth watching how they get on … and Dean's a great act to follow.