Personal and Professional Development

Once in employment the Trust supports staff each year in developing mandatory, personal and professional skills.  This is managed by the Trust’s Training and Development Group whose key purpose is to plan training and development activity within the Trust ensuring that it supports both individual and organisational objectives.


Staff can avail of training and development in a number of ways i.e. through in house training departments or through external providers.  Some courses which are delivered in house are in partnership with other organisations e.g. the Post Graduate Diploma in Health and Social Service Management is delivered by a Trust in house training department, Management and Organisation Development, in partnership with University of Ulster. 


Below are the in house training departments or departments who deliver training to staff:

  • Management & Organisation Development (MDOD) which includes NVQs
  • Health Promotion
  • Information and Communication Technology
  • Library Services
  • Medical and Dental Education
  • Nursing and Midwifery – provided by Nursing Education & Development Consortium North and West
  • Social Services Training Team
  • Blood Transfusion Service
  • Infection Control


There are also a range of courses to assist new entrants and existing staff to develop and reach their full potential through foundation courses which can lead to staff being able to progress towards professional qualifications.  For example, this year staff have successfully undertaken the following courses:-


K101 – Understanding Health and Social Care

The Trade Union UNISON has a national agreement with the Open University to provide access to higher education courses.  Trust staff, across a range of staff groupings such as nursing, administration and social care, have successfully completed this foundation course.  This programme offers accredited learning at Higher Education Level 1 – with 60 credits awarded on completion.


Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) First Line Management Programme

This programme is offered to practising or aspiring first line managers and results in a level 3 Award. It covers such topics as: Managing Self, Communication, Developing People, Managing Change and Managing Information.


ILM Middle Management Programme

This programme is aimed specifically at middle management.  The programme will consolidate the management skills necessary at this level and also prepare participants for the move to more senior positions. The programme develops practical skills in Leadership, Personal and People Development, Communication, Service Improvement and Management of People and results in a level 5 Award.


Post Graduate Diploma in Health and Social Services Management

This two-year course, delivered by the Management & Organisational Development Team at the Western Trust, will result in the award of a Post-Graduate Diploma in Health & Social Care Management from the University of Ulster.  With the addition of a further one year of study at the University of Ulster candidates can progress to a Masters in Public Administration.  The Diploma programme also has accreditation towards the new post qualifying requirements for Leadership and Strategic Award (for social work professionals).  Students have the option of exiting after the first year with the Award of the Post-Graduate Certificate in Health and Social Care Management, if they do not wish to continue onto the second year.


In addition, Trust staff have also attended training in the following:


· Personal Effectiveness

·Presentation Skills and Advanced Presentation Skills

·Effective Interview Techniques

· Selection & Interviewing

· Planning for Retirement

· Appraisal (for Medical Staff)


The Trust’s Management & Organisation Department also offers the following services to the Trust:


Team Development/Facilitation

We offer a range of activities including intra-team development, facilitation for strategy development, service and business planning. 



Coaching can support individuals in achieving personal change, can address deficiencies in current performance or strengthen under-developed skills, can be used as a “safe and objective haven” to discuss issues and give support (Masciarelli 1999) and can help individuals identify development needs, plan development activities and support personal problem-solving.


A Mediation service is offered by Management and Organisation Development Department.  It is an alternative form of dispute resolution and has been successfully used in a diverse range of situations arising within the Trust.  The process is undertaken by two trained Mediators.  The Mediators will act as an impartial third party helping two or more people reach agreement on their differences.



The members of the Management Development Team have a range of experience within HSC and in the private sector.  Increasingly, we are also using this experience to work with colleagues in the Trust to develop bespoke programmes and events



MDOD is also the location for the Trust's NVQ Assessment Centre.  The Centre is approved by City & Guilds, EDI and OCR to offer a range of NVQs in the following areas:-


  • Health and Social Care - Levels 2 and 3
  • Leadership for Health and Social Care Services - Level 5
  • Healthcare Support - Level 3 with various pathways which include clinical healthcare support, healthcare support services, maternity/paediatric support, allied health professional support, peri-operative support and pathology support.
  • Business Administration - Levels 2, 3, and 4
  • Training Assessment Quality Assurance Qualifications (TAQA) - Levels 3 and 4
  • ApprenticeshipNI


The Trust’s Training and Development Group annually considers applications from existing staff who wish to undertake post-entry training.  The Group also determines the level of support, both financial and non-financial, that may be available for staff undertaking such courses