Education, training and development

Education, training, development and support of staff are fundamental to the matron’s role, valuable to matrons themselves and vital for career progression. It is desirable for matrons to have an MSc level qualification to meet the requirements of their senior role, either from a bespoke or standard MSc programme.

Self-development for matrons

Self-development for the matron may take various forms, from participating in quality improvement projects to being involved in national staff retention collaboratives. Matrons should network with colleagues to share learning and discuss challenges, benefit from peer support and jointly develop solutions to problems. Refer to the development framework in the Appendix for further information on self-development.

Staff development

The matron’s role includes developing all staff, particularly ward, department and service leaders. Matrons should support and develop staff to handle complaints, review incidents and cascade learning across the organisation. Use NHS Improvement’s guidance on how to support career development opportunities for your staff and use this to motivate them to stay with the organisation.

As part of staff development, trusts should:

  • use detailed diagnostic data that meets the needs of the diverse workforce
  • engage staff at all levels
  • get board-level support for staff development and safe staffing across the organisation
  • review and reduce high turnover and improve the staffing establishment
  • develop and implement a recruitment strategy
  • develop a strategy that advances equality and addresses inequality. There are various means of funding staff development, including continuing
  • professional development (CPD) funding from HEE. Matrons should ensure a training needs analysis is completed to identify their own and staff development needs. All staff should have an equal opportunity for training and development. Staff with the greatest training needs should be allocated funding first, with others placed on a waiting list for the following year or the next round of the training programme.

Matrons should ensure courses are available for specialist professionals in their team, such as those working in cancer, renal medicine, and infection prevention and control, as well as for educators, advanced practitioners, lead practitioners and non-registered staff.

Implementing personalised care

Chapter 1 of the NHS Long Term Plan makes personalised care business as usual across the health and care system: it is one of the five major, practical changes to the NHS that will take place over the next five years. Universal personalised care: implementing the comprehensive model (2019) is the delivery plan for how this will be achieved and should be essential reading for all matrons.

Personalised care means people have choice and control over the way their care is planned and delivered, based on ‘what matters’ to them and their individual strengths, needs and preferences. It is a whole-population, all-ages approach to supporting people and their carers to manage their physical and mental health and wellbeing.

Matrons will be expected to develop both their own and the workforce’s professional skills and behaviours to deliver personalised care and to influence a fundamental shift in the traditional patient/clinician power balance. Evidence shows that to realise the full benefits from personalised care, its six components should be delivered together and in full when possible:

  • shared decision-making
  • personalised care and support planning
  • supported self-management
  • choice
  • social prescribing and community-based approaches
  • personal health budgets.

NHS England and NHS Improvement have a workplan to embed shared decision- making and personalised care and support planning into pre and post-registration training for doctors, nurses and other allied health professionals: 75,000 health and care staff will be trained by 2023/24, including matrons.

Visit NHS England and NHS Improvement’s website to learn more.

Further information

Self-development resources for matrons

RCN resources on professional development

RCN resources on leadership for inclusion

Matron’s Handbook – next sections