graduate scheme

Policy & Strategy Graduate Management Training Scheme

Still recruiting throughout COVID‑19

Job description

The NHS Policy & Strategy Management Training Scheme is nothing less than a life defining experience. Where else can you have a positive impact on the lives of 56 million people, including your own?

Transforming and shaping our services around ever-evolving patient needs, delivering deeper value for money and driving up standards.

This is complex work that requires total focus and unwavering commitment. So the next two years of your life will be very demanding. But they will give your career a brilliant trajectory ̶ because we’ve designed these schemes to create the NHS chief executives and directors of tomorrow.

You’ll experience a career full of outstanding development opportunities and exposure to leadership strategies delivered by NHS experts, international healthcare providers and private sector organisations. And for every challenge you’ll face, there’ll be twice as many rewards waiting for you.

The challenge

This high profile, fast-track graduate development scheme will enable you to become a future leader, improving people's health and their experience of the NHS. With an offer like that, it’s no wonder we are fourth in The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers and have been in their Top Ten Employers since 2003.

There’s no better time to join this scheme. The NHS is at a turning point. The values of our health service haven’t changed since its inception in 1948, but the world we live in has. It’s time to change, to evolve. It’s time to transform the NHS and the way we provide care.

This is your time to shine. It’ll be complex, challenging and career defining.

We’ll help you get your head around the complexities and design inspiring strategies. Naturally, you’ll need to be the type of person who doesn’t see problems, only exciting challenges that you can’t wait to start exploring innovative solutions for.

The training

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to healthcare in England, so your training and experiences will be very diverse too. To get the most out of it, you’ll need to be bright, bold and open-minded. You’ll also need to be flexible. You must be ready to gain exposure to the NHS at different levels, around different cultures and viewpoints ̶ and anywhere in the country.

Over two years you’ll have four work placements, gaining hands-on experience of how the health service interacts with government, frontline services, think tanks and academia. You’ll develop skills in evidence-based policy making, systems thinking and strategy development, and work with clinicians, economists and thought leaders to develop programmes that will make a real impact on patients’ lives. At the same time you’ll also work towards a Postgraduate Certificate in Healthcare Leadership and a Postgraduate Diploma in Health Policy. Throughout, you’ll enjoy support and guidance from a dedicated mentor and some of the best minds in the NHS.

Unique touches set the scheme apart. Your induction includes 20 days in which you set the agenda, experiencing NHS life on the frontline. So if you want to ride with an ambulance crew or observe an autopsy, you can. Later, you’ll arrange a ‘flexi-placement’ which could take you outside the NHS - it’s about you acquiring new perspectives to bring back to help the NHS.

What we are looking for

We’re looking for high-calibre ambitious people who are keen to help deliver positive transformational change in a complex organisation ̶ never forgetting that we’re here to improve people's health and their experience of the NHS. You’ll therefore get the most out of this scheme if you share our core values of providing an accountable, patient-centric service that is high-quality, fair and sustainable.

The challenge of taking on diverse placements in a full-time role, while undertaking training and study, means that self-motivation and superb organisational skills are vital. We expect you to be tenacious and resilient, with passion and confidence. We will endeavour to place you in a preferred region, but our nationwide remit means you should be ready to make a difference anywhere in England.

We are passionate about promoting equality, valuing diversity and working inclusively and welcome candidates that represent the society the NHS supports. You could already be established in your career, be currently working in the NHS or have recently graduated - either way we would love to hear from you.

You don’t need any previous relevant work experience, but you will need:

  • To believe in the principles and values that bind together the communities and people the NHS serves and the staff who work for it
  • The potential to become an outstanding leader
  • A commitment to improving people's health and their experience of the NHS
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to develop professional networks
  • Strong analytical capabilities, including the ability to solve problems
  • Flexibility, creativity and innovation


A minimum 2:2 degree in any discipline (secured or expected) or degree level equivalent health or management qualification

Accepted degree subjects


Additional job details

UK wide
c£24, 628

Contract, dates and working times

Start Date 6 September 2021


How to apply

We advise you to complete your application as soon as possible as applications may close early if high volumes are received.

Click Apply to start your application now. This job will be available on Prospects until 18 December 2020

Don't forget to mention Prospects to employers when you contact them.

Closing date:  18 December 2020

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