Non-Executive Director of NHS Digital

Body: NHS Digital
Appointing Department: Department of Health
Sector: Health
Location: London
Number of Vacancies: 2
Remuneration: £7883 per annum
Time Requirements: 2 to 3 days per month

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    03/12/2020 at 12:00

  • Panel Sift


  • Final Interview Date


  • Announcement


Vacancy Description

The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care is seeking to recruit up to 2 new Non-Executive Director (NEDs) to the NHS Digital board.

Role and Responsibilities of a Non-Executive Director

NHS Digital (NHSD) is the national provider of information, data and IT systems for health and social care in England. It designs, develops, delivers and operates digital technology to save lives and improve outcomes. It keeps the national digital systems supporting health and care secure, reliable and operational 24/7. NHSD is custodian of the data in England’s health and social care system, with responsibility for collecting, protecting, linking and disseminating some of the world’s most valuable health and care data assets. It is the primary provider of official statistics and analysis to the NHS and social care.

As a NED of NHSD, you will be responsible for helping to ensure that it is a successful organisation, both in terms of its effectiveness as a delivery organisation and employer. NEDs play a key role in ensuring continuous organisational improvement, overarching performance management, excellent customer focus and service delivery, scrutiny, challenge, accountability and effective corporate governance.

As a Non-Executive Director, you will:

  1. Provide an independent view and creative contribution at Board meetings and the Board’s sub-committees, including: ensuring the long-term strategic focus, effectiveness and reputation of NHS Digital through purposeful and constructive scrutiny and challenge.
  2. Support NHS Digital’s ambition to become a world leader in the production of open data and the application of technology in health and care. NHS Digital will be expected to make progress in making data available to drive innovation and use its expertise to take further digital transformation, developing a strong digital ecosystem which can respond quickly and flexibly to the needs of the health and social care system.
  3. Monitor, challenge and assure the performance of NHS Digital’s Executive Management Team, in: delivering the strategic vision, organisational priorities and business plan objectives, and meeting post Covid-19 challenges; carrying out its statutory responsibilities and delivering its mandate; monitoring of organisational performance, service delivery, quality and reputation; providing assurance of NHS Digital’s governance, including periodic reviews of the organisation.
  4. Ensure that the Executive Team is held to account for putting in place appropriate financial controls and ensuring compliance throughout the organisation.
  5. Support the Chair and the Executive Management Team to ensure NHS Digital fully embraces and embeds an excellent customer service ethos and delivers accordingly in order to enhance and develop its credibility and reputation.
  6. Help the Board define the vision, values, culture and strategy of the organisation and set a high standard for ethics and diversity and inclusion.
  7. Uphold the values of NHS Digital to deliver excellence, integrity, professionalism, innovation, trustworthiness and teamwork into all aspects of its work, and ensure that the organisation promotes diversity and inclusiveness for all its staff and stakeholders.
  8. Ensure that the Executive Team develops and maintains strong working relationships with the Department of Health and Social Care, NHSE/I, NHSX and the other health arms-length bodies and other stakeholders, to build on the reputation of NHS Digital as a trusted provider of health and care data, and support it to play a fundamental role in driving better care and better outcomes for patients in line with Government policy.
  9. When required, act as an ambassador for NHS Digital in public fora, promoting its work.

Person Specification

Qualities required for the role of a NED

The Department of Health and Social Care values and promotes diversity and encourages applications from all sections of the community. The boards of public bodies should reflect the population they are there to serve. Boards also benefit from fresh perspectives, and we are always keen to encourage candidates with private sector experience to consider applying for our roles.

Essential Criteria

To be considered, you must be able to demonstrate that you have the qualities, skills and experience to meet all the essential criteria for appointment.

  • A career record of achievement, including senior leadership experience, with an ability to operate effectively on the Board of a high-profile national organisation.
  • Knowledge and experience of using data and digital technology to drive transformation of an existing large-scale enterprise and/or to innovate and create new opportunities.
  • An understanding of the specific challenges and opportunities of making the best use of data, and digital technology, in public services in the 21st century.
  • An awareness of the key challenges faced by the public sector, including those arising from Covid-19, and the ability to bring your experience to bear on these challenges, using sound judgement to guide NHS Digital’s strategic direction.
  • Excellent communication skills, with the ability to work effectively as part of a team and with a wide range of stakeholders, with a constructive style, and able to challenge management recommendations where necessary.
  • An understanding of corporate governance and a commitment to the principles of public service, with the highest standards of personal propriety in relation to governance, accountability, risk and financial management.

Additional Information

NHS Digital is a non-Departmental Government body, established in April 2013 by the Health and Social Care Act 2012 as the Health and Information Centre, now trading as NHS Digital. In 2019-20 it employed 2,617 permanent staff and secondees; it receives over £530 million in grant in aid funding from the Department of Health and Social Care.  

NHS Digital is the national digital, data and technology delivery partner for the NHS and social care system, with expertise in the design, development and operation of complex IT and data systems. It has responsibility for maintaining the reliability, performance and security of the core infrastructure, platforms and live services on which the NHS and social care system relies. 

NHS Digital builds and maintains the technical systems that enable data both to be used to support care to individuals and to deliver better, more effective care for the community as a whole, encompassing a wide variety of services, from the Spine and core network and email services, to information services such as NHS Choices and transaction systems such as NHS Referrals, the Summary Care Record, and the Electronic Prescription Service. NHS Digital also delivers NHS Pathways, used by the 111 service for triage and diagnosis, and delivers many national screening services.

NHS Digital is custodian of the data in England’s health and social care system, with responsibility for collecting, protecting, linking and disseminating some of the world’s most valuable health and care data assets. It is the primary provider of official statistics and analysis to the NHS and social care.

NHS Digital’s annual report for 19-20 is here: Link


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