The communications team at PAHT has been shortlisted twice for a national awards programme.
The team has been shortlisted in the categories of Best COVID Response and Best Event at the Institute of Internal Communication Awards, in recognition of their strong focus on engagement with people across PAHT during the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 immediately placed an unprecedented demand on the communication of information and clinical and national guidance designed to protect people and patients. In March 2020, lockdown was introduced and a clear need was identified to move communications and engagement to a virtual and digital format, whilst remaining accessible to colleagues who were working on the frontline in clinical settings.
The switch to virtual and digital platforms was integral to output and the way we shared and presented information, and this evolved as the team identified further communications needs, including:
- Microsoft Teams Live briefings and webinars
- Virtual events to support engagement and health and wellbeing
- A daily COVID-19 update eBulletin sent to all staff, creating a trusted and current set of information on key topics such as PPE guidance
- Use of video messages and montages to share information and appreciation of hard work and commitment
- YouTube playlists to support health and wellbeing and a range of virtual events and webinars
A key feature also included Events not in a tent, for which the communications team has been shortlisted for Best Event. From Monday, 28 September 2020, to Wednesday, 30 September 2020, we invited our people to take part in a series of virtual events, which they could join from their desk or from home. The three day programme gave staff the opportunity and platform to share ideas, develop new initiatives, hear about the support and benefits available, and build relationships from across PAHT. This was in place of the highlight of the annual calendar at PAHT – Event in a tent - in which a series of events are held in a marquee on The Princess Alexandra Hospital site every September.
A highlight of the three days was a special virtual guest appearance from Ruth May, chief nursing officer for England, who thanked the nursing, midwifery and allied health professional teams for their commitment. Staff also took part in sessions on emotional resilience, mindfulness and supporting their mental health with Alexis Powell-Howard from the multi-award winning Fortis Therapy and Training. They had the opportunity to learn more about quality improvement at PAHT, the culture at the organisation, and a session on careers in nursing, midwifery and the allied health professions with speakers from across PAHT and from the NHS regional team. Additionally, staff could find out more about celebrating equality, diversity and inclusion, as part of our continued commitment to ensuring that all of our people feel supported. Staff also enjoyed some spectacular award ceremonies for long service colleagues and the Our Amazing People Awards for all to attend.
Ogechi Emeadi, director of people, organisational development and communications, said: “It is fantastic that our communications team have been recognised twice, with the COVID response and Events not in a tent in the spotlight.
“We have heard how helpful our people have found our communications as a way of keeping informed and connected during the pandemic.
“We are committed to supporting our people and continuing to build on this amazing work for the future. Thank you to the communications team – we are all looking forward to the finals.”
The Institute of Internal Communication Awards 2021 finalists will be announced at an awards ceremony on 24 September.
- Photo caption: The communications team (clockwise: Laura Warren, associate director of communications; Lauren Nash, head of communications; Massimo Di Muccio, digital communications manager; and Hannah Hobbs, communications officer).