The workplace supervisor
We will need to know who the workplace supervisor will be. The workplace supervisor will take overall responsibility for the trainee and is identified in the trainee’s OneFile e-portfolio as the ‘workplace supervisor’. This does not mean ‘workplace supervisor’ is your job title. It refers specifically to your relationship and responsibilities to the HSST trainee.
Seniority and experience
Ideally, the workplace supervisor should be of consultant grade or equivalent, hold a postgraduate qualification and have enthusiasm for the training and developing scientists.
Training and induction to the role
We ask you to complete Schools HSST Train the Trainer event and cascade the learning to colleagues involved in delivering training. Ideally, you should access any in house training available, including your Trust’s online learning, to support you in delivering training. Typically, most Trusts’ learning and development teams will run training programmes for educators. These often have a focus of nursing of medical trainees, but nevertheless covering all the principles of good training. Some examples are given in the person specification.
Time for training
To take responsibility as the workplace supervisor, you must be allocated time in your current role to deliver training, which means having the time to meet regularly with the trainee(s), having the time to assess the e-portfolio work. Meetings should also discuss gaps in training and how these can be met. A workplace supervisor should have time to monitor progress and feedback and generally be available to support and mentor the trainee(s).
We recommend meeting with your trainee at least fortnightly to once a month. It is helpful to have a record of what is discussed, these notes can be used to formulate next steps and actions, it is helpful to keep notes as evidence of discussing progress and for future review meetings on the e-portfolio. It can also be useful to have a separate individual to be a mentor.
There are two other training roles the host department will need to organise:
- each trainee must be allocated one or more specialist research supervisor
- ideally qualified to doctoral level or equivalent and holding any required registration
- able where appropriate, in association with the HEI, to supervise research activity and contribute to the evaluation of innovation
- the research supervisor and the workplace supervisor may be the same person but will not necessarily be so
- if the research supervisor is a different person from the workplace supervisor we will need the individual to complete the education and training qualifications form
A consultant or individual with similar senior status, who could be from outside the department or from another organisation, to act as a professional mentor for the trainee. The mentor should provide advice and guidance on professional development but would not be involved in day-to-day delivery of training.
Keep everyone informed, notify the School and MAHSE if your trainee will be absent from training e.g., maternity leave/long-term sick leave. The trainee should take responsibility for this too.
Workplace supervisors should know when the trainee will need to be at university, what they will be studying and what their key deadlines are. Workplace supervisors should establish contact with the university. Your trainee is the best person to help you to establish who the University contacts are. This contact can enable you to check their academic progress regularly. It is good practice to have collaborative three-way meetings between the trainee, the workplace supervisor, and the university contact. It is important for workplace supervisors to have good communication skills, approachability in this training role.
Knowledge and understanding
It is important that the workplace supervisor understands the academic process for Doctoral degrees. Workplace supervisors need to familiarise themselves with the HSST curriculum and the HSST Standards of Proficiency, so you know what your trainee will need to achieve.
Responsibilities of the workplace supervisor
- Take overall educational and supervisory responsibility for the trainee.
- Ensure trainee is familiar with the curriculum for each year/stage of training.
- Ensure trainee has day-to-day supervision appropriate to their stage of training.
- Ensure trainee is making the necessary clinical and educational progress.
- Ensure trainee is aware of the assessment system and process, how will you support your trainee’s training throughout the 5 years?
- Get to know your trainee well so that you can provide professional and pastoral support and recognise when your trainee is under pressure and stress.
- Meet with your trainee regularly, have 1:2:1’s to discuss progress and feedback to develop your trainee.
- Review the training plan regularly, this can be recorded on OneFile.
- Participate in the annual review of progression, the review of progression is facilitated by the School and serves as a check on a trainees’ progress with their learning and professional development. The review is based on a brief report from the workplace supervisor, the evidence is reviewed by a team of reviewers, who will reach a judgement about whether the evidence supports or does not support the trainee’s progression.
- Host and attend regional HSST moderation assessment days. These can be trust led or regional events organised by the HSST trainees using the trainee Networks. These events help support trainees and supervisors to share best practice and understand the right level of evidence
- Agree a training plan to make clear the commitment required to ensure that appropriate training opportunities are available, and there is protected time for the trainee.
- Ensure that a work-based induction (where appropriate) has been carried out soon after appointment to the HSST programme.