Inclusion & Diversity Ambassadors: A new network supporting equality, diversity & inclusion in NHS Finance

As with any organisation, different policies are in place throughout the NHS, different staff and experiences are involved; and often each organisation may liaise with different recruitment agencies depending on preference and relationships built. Naturally, with such a big employer, challenges and issues will arise and this has led to inconsistencies around recruitment processes within NHS finance.

Working with their national Inclusion and Diversity working group, Future-Focused Finance (FFF) have been tasked with identifying volunteers in every NHS organisation in England to be an ‘Inclusion and Diversity Ambassador’. The I&D Ambassadors will support work being delivered to improve the disparities across NHS finance in terms of the diversity of staff; in particular when being recruited, and the processes being used that may need updating or changing completely.

Role objectives

  • To help develop correct and up to date information on NHS organisations in England in terms of their recruitment and retention policies for finance roles
  • When at the point the data collated is thriving, FFF will use this going forward to identify areas that need improvement and support and will then work with the I&D Ambassadors at these organisations / patches to develop an action-led programme that will endeavour to make a positive change
  • It is a voluntary but active role where the ambassador will be expected to keep a record of the recruitment policies, processes, and data regarding diversity of candidates etc. of their NHS organisation
  • The ambassador will be expected to work with their regional talent board (STP/ICS wide) to feedback on data collated. FFF will work with the Chair of each regional talent where this work and data will feed into future development and planning around this I&D agenda
  • The role may be suitable for a Value Maker, FACE, FSD Lead or training / development lead
  • Ambassadors should be passionate about equality, diversity and inclusion and be interested in attending / being involved in FFF’s diversity and inclusion events / projects

Each network will be chaired by a senior finance representative, and we are pleased to confirm the appointment of the following regional Chairs: 

  • North West – Jonathan Stephens, Regional Finance Director (North West), NHS England and NHS Improvement
  • North East & Yorkshire – Amy Whitaker, Executive Director of Finance, Airedale NHS Foundation Trust
  • East of England - Jeff Buggle, Regional Finance Director (East of England), NHS England and NHS Improvement
  • London - Yarlini Roberts, Director of Finance, Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

The Ambassador role is a fantastic opportunity to increase your profile and network, meet like-minded people and to be involved in making a positive change within NHS finance. If you or someone at your organisation would be interested in this role, please contact futurefocusedfinance@nhs.net registering interest. Or if you want further information we are happy to discuss on a call, please email us to set this up.

"“Becoming an Inclusion & Diversity Ambassador formalises the activities of change I want to contribute to this national social movement”

Tuan Truong, Associate Director of Finance at Northern Care Alliance NHS Group



"As a female finance professional, I was always interested to understand why, despite there being more females in finance departments overall, there were fewer who made it to the more senior positions. The Inclusion & Diversity Ambassador network is a great opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals, who all want to make a positive change for the future of our finance departments. There is so much research out there that demonstrates the benefits of having a diverse workforce at all levels within our teams and I am so excited that we now have a group giving dedicated time to really think about how we develop best practice across our region."

- Amy Whitaker, Executive Director of Finance at Airedale NHS FT




"I am working to ensure that all finance line mangers have a positive discussion with staff about career and training aspirations as part of the appraisal process and regular one-to-ones."

- Daryl Cockman, Head of Financial Development at East Suffolk and North Essex NHS FT