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Chief Executive

Meeting workforces challenges head-on

26 September 2019 | by Chief Executive

From the many conversations that I’ve had with our members over the last 18 months, it couldn’t have been clearer to me that there are significant challenges facing the psychological workforce in the UK.

Even so, the picture which has been painted by our comprehensive membership survey is shocking, and sets out just how much work needs to be done to give psychologists the working environments you need to serve the public.

We are still in the relatively early stages of analysing the 6,000 responses which you gave us, but already there are clear themes emerging which require immediate attention and should be of real concern.

Significant numbers of you are worried about the excessive workplace demands which are being placed on psychologists, and how spiralling workloads are affecting your ability to provide the best possible care.

You also told us how funding and resources are not matching up to ever-increasing demands, creating gaps in the services that psychologists offer.

The BPS is your professional body, and we will be using these results to demand that all of our members have workplaces with the positive and supportive culture which the research done by psychologists has shown to be so important.

We will continue to keep you updated on the results of the survey as our analysis continues, and we will be presenting more detailed results at our Senate meeting in Leicester on 16 and 17 October.

This will also see representatives from our diverse networks discuss and ultimately decide on our next campaigning priority.

All of our members had the opportunity to vote and narrow down the shortlist, which now consists of topics focusing on poverty, prevention, and the wellbeing of older people.

Any of these would be a worthy winner and a crucial issue for us to bring psychological expertise to, and it’s a shortlist which highlights the range of areas where our members are doing vital work.

The Senate meeting will also see us hold an Extraordinary General Meeting, where we are hoping to change some of the Society’s rules. This is an important part of our drive to improve our membership offering and communications with you.

All BPS members are invited to attend the EGM, but if you are unable to do so I am always happy to hear from members, including anyone who may have missed the membership survey but wants to tell us about a workforce issue where the BPS may be able to help.

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