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My clinical background is in nursing having attained a BSc Hons RGN in Nursing Studies. My clinical experience involved working in medical wards in both Bangor Hospital and the Ulster Hospital. I held a previous post as a Quality & Research Coordinator involved in quality initiatives but also in nursing research and this post helped me in developing the skills I required for my current post. During project management experience in relation to the Commission for Health Improvement I had the opportunity to participate and drive review within my Trust. This led to further opportunities working towards a Health Quality Service (HQS) trust-wide accreditation. During this time I was involved in establishing and developing policy frameworks and processes within the Trust and gained valuable skills and experience in relation to the development of Trust-wide policy documents. Over the years I have gained experience in relation to presentations at all levels with all professional groupings which have been beneficial for my current post. I have had the opportunity to gain experience and competence in relation to the development of Trust wide strategy documents e.g. quality, audit and governance strategies and to work on a multiprofessional basis with all staff across the organization gaining a trust-wide over-view of all services. I found participation in the Beeches/Kings Fund leadership course for senior nurses a challenging yet beneficial piece of development.
Be aware of the challenges such a post would bring - need to be aware of and being able to manage competing priorities, demanding priorities and timescales, need to be politically aware in terms of competing agendas, need to be able to ensure work-life balance. The job provides great opportunities to learn about how an organization operates, the various departments and services, which exist, and working with all levels of staff. You will need to have a good understanding of quality improvement methodologies including audit, how to develop and implement strategies, project management skills, leadership and good interpersonal qualities.
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