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Supporting a geographically dispersed workforce to deliver a premium service

by Cath Hewson, Clinical Operations Manager at Xyla Elective Care

At Xyla Elective Care, our growing team of permanent and bank Echocardiographers are our greatest asset, and ensuring they feel valued and supported from day one is essential.

With our network of contracts spanning across England, from Newcastle in the North East to Exeter in the South, our dedicated workforce is dispersed throughout the country, positioned to meet each region’s unique and diverse requirements.

This widespread presence allows us to efficiently respond to local communities’ specific needs and demands, ensuring that our services are tailored to cater to the distinct healthcare landscapes and patient populations in every area we serve. By strategically locating our workforce, we aim to maximize our ability to deliver timely and specialised support and facilitate a seamless and comprehensive healthcare experience for all.

Recruitment, onboarding, and induction are all important stages before an Echocardiographer can begin their first clinical assignment. Our recruitment consultants work closely with our clinically-led operations team to ensure applicants are suitably qualified, with relevant experience for the assignment they have applied to be involved with. These assignments range from being based within a large NHS Trust to a small community-based clinic, so the experience of working in a similar location is a great starting point.

After compliance checks are complete and mandatory training is updated before every new assignment, all Echocardiographers are invited to Elective Care induction on MS Teams and a separate onsite induction at the hospital or clinic.

Inductions are carried out virtually and in person, respectively, and ensure Echocardiographers have all the information they need to work confidently and safely at every new healthcare site they are deployed to. A team member usually carries out the onsite induction based at that institution. That way they can easily explain first-hand the department workflow and how their equipment works. The Xyla induction is an opportunity to ensure Xyla Elective Care ways of working are well defined, and all questions answered, as these are performed by one of the permanent team of Echocardiographers.

We understand that working in unfamiliar surroundings without a network of colleagues around you can be a very different prospect, so at Xyla Elective Care, we offer ongoing support to all Echocardiographers. Our clinical Operations team are all practising, British Society of Echocardiography-accredited Echocardiographers, so we understand the challenges of the role. Throughout a contract we work closely with the customer and our Echo team working at their site to ensure patients experience a high level of care and work is completed to the departments’ requirements. This is achieved by ongoing communication and feedback.

Our service delivery team allocates each customer with a dedicated clinical coordinator who can liaise with Echocardiographers to ensure availability aligns with capacity. Our coordinators provide a clear point of contact via our dedicated main phoneline.

Xyla Elective Care audits a proportion of all Echocardiographers’ work and provides feedback to both the Echocardiographer and the customer. Echocardiographer feedback may also provide advice for development opportunities, such as reviewing recent British Society of Echocardiography guidelines or refreshing knowledge. Quality and patient safety is at the heart of everything we do at Xyla Elective Care.

Working as a locum can make you feel very isolated. Unfortunately, many locums are often expected to land in a new department and adapt to the new workflows without appropriate levels of support. This is not the culture or expectation we follow at Xyla Elective Care. As well as providing detailed information to all staff about new assignments, our approach supports individuals’ welfare, providing all staff with dedicated points of contact.

Using this clear pathway clearly demonstrates how Xyla Elective Care support our Echocardiographers, ensuring they have the necessary resources and support to excel in their roles while prioritising the delivery of exceptional and high-quality care to customers.

If you are interested in joining our echocardiography team, don’t hesitate to get in touch with laurel.walsh@acaciumgroup.com (permanent) or maria.nafliu@xylaelectivecare.com (locum).

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