Since April 2014, the Staff Friends and Family Test (FFT) has been carried out in all NHS trusts providing acute, community, ambulance and mental health services in England. View the Staff FFT data here.
The aim is for all staff to have the opportunity to feed back their views on their organisation at least once per year. The Staff FFT is helping to promote a big cultural shift in the NHS, where staff have both the opportunity and confidence to speak up, and where the views of staff are increasingly heard and are acted upon.
The Staff FFT was developed by NHS England and a working group made up of representatives from provider trusts, staff side representatives and NHS Employers. Draft guidance was circulated across the NHS in December 2013 and views were sought from academic experts working in the field of staff engagement.
Research has shown a relationship between staff engagement and individual and organisational outcome measures, such as staff absenteeism and turnover, patient satisfaction and mortality; and safety measures, including infection rates. The more engaged staff members are, the better the outcomes for patients and the organisation generally. It is therefore important that we strengthen the staff voice, as well as the patient voice.
The Staff FFT is not directly affected by changes to the patient and public-facing Friends and Family Test, which are due to take effect from 1 April 2020. These resulted from the FFT Development Project, which ran in 2018-19. However, we are open to exploring ways that the staff-facing FFT could be improved in the future.
The key principles of Staff FFT, the full guidance for implementation, and a list of frequently asked questions are provided below.