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Today’s NHS Trusts face a constant uphill struggle to reduce costs and deliver the same level of excellent patient care

Leading UK teaching hospital saves £5million on agency costs per year and delivers excellent patient care in line with Care Quality Commission standards

Cash-strapped NHS organisations should adopt an integrated workforce management approach if they hope to generate multi-million-pound cost savings and still deliver excellent patient care, according to SMART. The leading supplier of workforce management solutions has recently worked with one of the most high-profile teaching hospitals in England to deliver an innovative technology framework that is saving £5million on agency staff costs per year and has provided a tangible Return on Investment (ROI) within one month of deploying the new system.

The hospital first turned to SMART three years ago to support the Trust’s ambitious cost improvement programme that was designed to save 15% of its budget over the first two years, and then over 30% during the next four years. Since deploying SMART, the organisation has managed to release an extra 60 days per month back to patient care for highly qualified matrons and managers as timesheets have gone online with around 800 timesheets per week now sent off to payroll automatically. By adopting a hosted approach to workforce management, the Trust has also substantially reduced its requirement for in-house technical support safe in the knowledge that confidential patient information is stored in a totally secure environment. SMART’s new technology forms part of a hospital-wide HR programme aimed at transforming working practices. In addition, it has delivered huge savings both in cost and in improved efficiencies for this leading teaching hospital.

Nick Whiteley, Managing Director, Health Division at SMART said, “Today’s NHS Trusts face a constant uphill struggle to reduce costs and deliver the same level of excellent patient care. Adopting a totally automated and integrated approach to workforce management holds the key to maximising staff efficiency and minimising agency costs, which can save NHS organisations up to £5 million a year. Without a doubt, integrated workforce management has a pivotal role to play in years to come, helping healthcare professionals to deliver excellent patient services – mindful of the Care Quality Commission - as the NHS moves into a new, cost conscious era.”

SMART’s recent real-life customer implementation reinforces the findings of a paper published last year by Pierre Audoin Consultants (PAC), a leading software and IT services analyst and research firm, and commissioned by SMART. The paper estimated that 54% of NHS trusts do not currently use any electronic rostering (e-Rostering) or workforce management systems despite overwhelming evidence that workforce inefficiency is costing the NHS in the region of £150 million per year. Feedback from fifteen NHS Trusts where such solutions have been implemented demonstrate tangible cost and other business benefits including:

• South Devon Healthcare NHS Trust who reduced temporary staff costs by 8% resulting in a saving of £350,000
• The Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, who reduced sickness absence from 5.4% to 3.1%

Over the years, SMART has witnessed firsthand how significant savings can be made by implementing comprehensive workforce management systems which cover e-rostering, time and attendance, bank administration, expenses and ERS/Payroll integration for hours worked while arguably providing better patient care, a better work/life balance for staff and complying with working time regulations.

-ENDS-

NOTES TO EDITORS

About SMART

Established in 1986, SMART is a leading provider of web-based solutions for workforce management designed to help companies achieve agility and cost-efficiency from their greatest asset – people.

SMART’s comprehensive portfolio, covering:

• e-Rostering
• Time & Attendance
• Bank Management
• Real Time Hospital
• Doctors Rostering,

delivers a range of tangible business benefits to private and public sector organisations. By implementing SMART’s technology, organisations can expect to achieve a sustainable reduction in their people costs of up to 10%. By adopting a hosted approach to workforce management using SMART, businesses can save £100,000s and up to 5.5 tonnes of CO2 a year.

SMART in Healthcare

SMART has a strong reputation for delivering fully integrated workforce management solutions to a significant proportion of the UK Healthcare market – all from a single, central platform. The company offers a free initial consultation service to NHS organisations using SMART’s Workforce Efficiency Assessment (WEA) tool. WEA provides a detailed analysis of an NHS organisation’s shift patterns, rotas and local staffing agreements in order to assess best working practices and provide recommendations for the future.

SMART is dedicated to helping customers maximise their SMART investment by offering a full range of support, consultancy and training services. It works closely with customers to develop new products and organises regular events that facilitate knowledge sharing and learning across the SMART user community.

Over 600 organisations worldwide benefit from SMART’s solutions and services. Customers include Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust, Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust, Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust, Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, Dudley Group of Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Western Health & Social Care Trust, Ocado, Gist, Habitat, Jaguar, JCB, Mandarin Oriental, Sainsbury's, Swissport, Trailfinders, Tussauds Group, and Greater Manchester Fire & Rescue Service.

For more information, please visit [http://www.smart-workforce.com]

For information relating specifically to the NHS sector, please visit: www.smart-rostering.co.uk

For press enquiries, please contact:

Paski Matarazzo, Marketing Manager, SMART
Telephone: 01438 822229
Email: paskim@smart-workforce.com

Andreina West, PR Artistry
Telephone: 01491 639500
Email: andreina@pra-ltd.co.uk

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