Hybrid meetings may not be the first thing that springs to mind when you think about the future of the NHS, but in light of the events of the last three years, it’s a topic that is increasingly on the agenda. With some appointments happening virtually, certain staff working on rotational shift patterns to reduce mass infection and others adopting more permanent hybrid working patterns, video conferencing and hybrid meetings have become an integral tool for many NHS staff departments.
Hybrid meetings are those where not all attendees are in the room. This means some of the attendees join in person, while other participants join virtually via a conference call or video platform.
Some of the benefits hybrid meetings can bring to the NHS
- Better collaboration
When it comes to organising in-person meetings, it can often be challenging to accommodate different shift patterns and alternating days of remote working amongst staff. These scheduling conflicts can often become a bottleneck to productivity, making it difficult to maintain consistent communication between departments and staff members.
- Better recruitment and employee retention
Geographic location can often restrict the pool of talent you’re able to attract when it comes to recruitment. Hybrid working policies expand this radius and reach. This aligns with the People Plan the NHS launched in 2021, which centres around the mission statement of: “More people, working differently, in a compassionate and inclusive culture.”
As an organisation, they have committed to offering more flexible, varied roles and opportunities for different types of flexible working for staff, allowing them to retain and attract new talent. Hybrid meetings allow staff to fit their jobs around the demands of their lives and find a better balance between work and home life - making hybrid roles more attractive and valuable.
- More diversity and inclusion
Hybrid meetings are an effective way of making the workplace more accessible and inclusive for all staff members. Employees who may not be able to attend meetings in person can still join the meeting remotely. This could be staff with reduced mobility or those who are self-isolating. Hybrid meetings allow them to remain part of the conversation, enabling collaboration to happen and giving previously excluded members of staff a greater share of voice.
- Reduced risk of infection
As we enter winter, the risk of illness and infection tends to become more of a threat. Hybrid meetings can be held with fewer in-person participants and more people joining virtually, which helps to reduce the risk of infection and the resulting staff shortages - helping to ensure service as normal.
- Increased productivity
This hybrid model has been shown to boost productivity by giving workers the ability to design their own schedules and work environments, as well as allowing people to focus more on the content of the meeting rather than on the logistics of attending.
Hybrid meetings allow flexibility when scheduling appointments and meetings. This enables collaboration regardless of whether staff are on-site or working remotely and regardless of whether patients can join in person.
Accommodate hybrid meetings within your organisation
Other UK public services like Merseycare, Bolton NHS, and Greater Manchester Combined Authorities are using DisplayNote's call and app Launcher to enable remote communications and facilitate easy hybrid meetings across their organisation.
Launcher software acts as a smart interface for the meeting room screen, giving room users easy access to their scheduled video calls and essential apps. This reduces meeting setup time and demand on IT departments - saving valuable time and resources.
“Launcher has made a significant difference to how we deliver training. And because it makes the interactive displays so simple to use, our staff use it a lot. We’re getting the full return on the investment of our equipment.” - Mark Scoales, Digital Services Manager, Greater Manchester Combined Authority.