A first for Acumentice, this summer, NHS Graduate Management Trainee, Wil Peake, joined the team for an 8 week flexi placement.
As part of the Graduate Management Training Scheme (GMTS), it is encouraged trainees use their flexi placement to gain a broader and more holistic view of the wider healthcare sector. After working in an operational role at the Royal London Hospital, and as Strategy Lead at Bart’s Health NHS Trust, Wil joined Acumentice as a Junior Consultant.
Over the 8 weeks, Wil worked with our Managing Director, Karina Malhotra, and our Senior Consultant, Philip Purdy, and having visibility and access to our senior management team provided valuable insight into some of the work we’ve been supporting at two major clients.
Continued Professional Development is very important to Acumentice and we therefore wanted to ensure Wil gained as much as possible from the experience and could also make a meaningful contribution from the beginning. Wil joined us as we were beginning a project supporting a client to visualise key elements of their elective care data with the aim of improving clarity of interpretation thus making it easier to identify potential challenges. Despite this being a new area for Wil, the Acumentice team ensured that with thorough training and ongoing support, Wil was able to make meaningful contributions to these data packs which led to him becoming increasingly involved in direct communications with the Trust we were supporting.
As the placement has come to an end, we can confidently say the experience has been mutually beneficial and we would definitely welcome the opportunity to receive an NHS Graduate Management trainee again. Read on to hear from Wil’s perspective:
When I started on the NHS Graduate management training scheme (GMTS) in 2019, I had no idea what was coming. In fact, if I could go back and tell that younger me – I think he’d struggle to believe it as would we all with the ensuing events about to take place.
The GMTS includes a Flexi placement component – where trainees can apply for placements in an organisation of their choice, provided it will bring new experience and perspective to their time on the scheme and future career. When it came to applying for a Flexi, I was looking for innovative companies in the private sector that would have a meaningful impact in the post-COVID NHS. This broadening of my experience could only bring with it a more accurate understanding of the context that the healthcare sector now finds itself in and I was excited to secure a placement with Acumentice. I’ve experienced first-hand the complementary nature of NHS organisations such as ICS’s collaborating with consultancies. The wealth of knowledge and resources that can be concentrated on a single task allows the consultancy to agilely deploy an iterative process to produce its task specific outputs.
One of the projects that I assisted with was the development of data packs and visualisations supporting a high volume low complexity (HVLC) elective hub in London. Acumentice increased management bandwidth by producing weekly analysis of the combined PTL and condensing them into one self-contained data pack. It’s no overstatement that NHS staff have many competing demands for their attention, and it’s been great to see how Acumentice can facilitate the rapid communication of impactful data, thus enabling rapid informed decision making.
I’ve seen the unique viewpoint a third party has, like Acumentice, to see complex and systemic NHS issues from an outside perspective, often enabling them to question ongoing assumptions and status quo by providing further breadth of experience and working knowledge from different disciplines. This type of thinking can help us see the opportunities for change more clearly. Without the cultural ability to see our actions and the changes around us from a systemic perspective, and the capacity to evaluate proposed solutions in the context of their effects on the wellbeing of the system, we can be prone to falling into repetitive patterns of behaviour. An observer from outside the system can therefore be a powerful change agent. When that outside observer is a network of highly experienced professionals with backgrounds from across the health service, such as Acumentice, their capacity for impactful change is amplified.
Acumentice perfectly fit my flexi placement criteria. They’ve created many mutually beneficial, and lasting relationships with the NHS and I’ve seen first hand how they are able to offer a new perspective, with a wealth of diverse knowledge and practical experience. In addition, they can provide additional capacity by supplementing management bandwidth across the wider health system . Furthermore, they represent a key resource capable of delivering a focused “task and finish” style approach that is invaluable when dealing with time sensitive projects within a complex system. Their processes are open to feedback input throughout, and modifications being made in real time allow for a truly bespoke service.
I believe that the synergistic and complementary relationship between the NHS and organisations like Acumentice will continue to play an important role in supporting the NHS to face its challenges and I look forward to bringing the benefit of my experiences back to the NHS.
NHS GMTS Trainee