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Please could someone explain NHS bands and how crucial they are to promotions please?

(17 Posts)
BanningTheWordNaice Sat 12-Dec-15 12:30:30


I'm waiting to be interviewed for a band 2 admin post which could potentially be very interesting but am waiting to hear back from a load of band 4 posts (for which the closing date was much later) which I also felt more than comfortable meeting the requirements for.

I'm a graduate with a good degree and a year's admin experience so know that I could easily earn more than the starting band 2 salary in another position especially outside of the NHS but would really like to get into the field that this position is in. My query is whether I would struggle to be promoted in the future above a single band level as I've 'come in' at that level and am therefore classified there or whether that is an unfounded worry.

Many thanks for your help, it's been an utterly shit year so am trying to avoid adding stress for myself for taking a post which would be tough financially if it's not going to have long term progression possibilities. I'm totally aware that this query might be irrelevant as it's easily possible they will have someone more awesome than me ;)

BanningTheWordNaice Sat 12-Dec-15 12:33:09

Oops sorry about the two pleases!

mumblebumble Sat 12-Dec-15 12:36:42

AFAIK you wouldn't be able to get promoted within the role to anything above a band 2 salary, so to get a band 3+ you'd need to find a new job. You can find the ranges for each band online.

Freezingwinter Sat 12-Dec-15 12:37:14

It depends on the job. Askar your interview or over the phone about progression and how far it can go. If you accepted the band 2 and later applied for say a 4 or 5 it wouldn't work against you providing yoy met job requirements. Good luck x

Salmiak Sat 12-Dec-15 12:51:14

Taking a band 2 post can be quite a good way of getting your foot in the door. Ward clerks/medical records people spend a lot of time walking round departments collecting notes, appointment bookers/receptionists will gain lots of skills at using patient booking systems, audio typists learn the medical terminology, etc. So you get to know the computer systems and can get a feel for which departments are nice to work in and which ones are always stressed/badly managed.

Band 4 admin posts tend to be more senior medical secretaries, waiting list supervisors, etc, supervising a small team of lower bands.

I started off as a band 2 temp audio typing. I then applied for a med sec role in the same department at a band 4 and got it. So you can progress.

BanningTheWordNaice Sat 12-Dec-15 13:16:51

Thanks everyone, I'm really trying to research my options for getting into this area. I guess it's partly knowing that friends with the same degree and experience are making 20k plus... in jobs that don't interest me in any way. So need to remember I'm not them yada yada.

CountryLovingGirl Sat 12-Dec-15 19:18:05

What field is it you are trying to get into?

BanningTheWordNaice Sat 12-Dec-15 21:59:36

Clinical trials. I've got experience of running psychology research studies combined with admin.

Freezingwinter Sat 12-Dec-15 22:05:35

Have you applied to a specialist research ward? What about as a clinical trials co ordinate?

Freezingwinter Sat 12-Dec-15 22:05:52

Sorry that should read co ordinator!

NorthernLurker Sat 12-Dec-15 22:11:37

I started as a 2 and am now a 7. It's possible but you will have to pick your way up, job by job.

CountryLovingGirl Sat 12-Dec-15 22:12:15

I wouldn't go in as a band 2. Apply for higher posts in clinical trials.

BanningTheWordNaice Sat 12-Dec-15 22:27:22

Thanks for the different advice everyone. I don't THINK I have enough experience to be a coordinator/associate which were the band 5 posts as most of those posts want someone with more than a years experience/ advanced admin and my experience is of running trials in a university setting not NHS so don't have GCP training and other. I do feel comfortable with the assistant posts which were mostly band 3 or 4 which is why I began to wonder if I was aiming too low. At the same time I'm wondering if I should take the route into it if offered and and least get experience. Trying to do as much research as possible into sensible ways to get into it...

DontMindMe1 Sun 13-Dec-15 17:02:57

in my previous job in the nhs, i started work as a medical secretary at Band 3. A year later i applied for and got the post of PA/medical secretary at Band 4.

In both of those roles i was entitled to an incremental increase in my salary each year but once i hit the final salary level for that band - i would have to apply for a different position if i wanted to earn more.

m0therofdragons Sat 19-Dec-15 15:45:56

I took a job in the nhs and was over qualified but it suited my family. In 12 months my manager has added bits to my role and put me up a band. Getting your foot in the door, developing skills and keeping and eye out is the way to move up in the nhs. We also get lots of opportunities for secondments in my hospital which is a great way to develop.

Gliblet Sat 19-Dec-15 16:02:42

I would personally recommend downloading the job descriptions for your eventual 'target' posts (coordinator or similar) and have a look at the competencies - then you can work out which ones you need to strengthen, refresh or obtain and target jobs that will allow you to fill in the gaps. And as previous posters have said, it could be a good foot in the door either way. The research nurses and PI's I work with are mostly happy to talk to more junior staff who are planning a longer term career in research about different career routes and training opportunities.

Identifying useful online training courses might help as well, both in terms of upskilling and demonstrating your commitment to clinical research as a career. There's quite a bit out there - and for GCP it's usually available free once you're employed within an NHS trust.

BanningTheWordNaice Sat 19-Dec-15 16:30:03

Thanks very much, I've been doing research into possible further training courses including perhaps doing a master's in clinical research in a couple of years time if I felt it would be beneficial once I've had some experience in a role and a better idea of what I would need to do to progress but those look really interesting.

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