Agency and Bank People

What is it?

Sometimes we need to buy in extra shifts from skilled people who work as part of the CHFT bank. This is like having an internal ‘bank of extra people’ to draw on. Sometimes we also need to buy in shifts from skilled people who are employed by external workforce agencies. This all costs money so we design a plan about how we use bank and agency workers, on a temporary basis, and when we most need them, to support the people who are directly employed by us.

How will this look?

There’s a range of things we will be doing this year to make sure that we don’t rely too heavily on having to buy in these extra shifts.

Here’s what we’re doing:

  • Increasing the number of people who work on our CHFT bank, rather than having to go to often more expensive external agencies
  • Working hard to fill vacancies, sometimes by recruiting from overseas and also by thinking creatively and not relying on filling the old, more traditional roles
  • Building better relationships with external workforce agencies so that we can understand our needs and we can understand theirs
  • Getting rid of the old pen and paper rotas and introducing e-rostering for lots of different staff groups. Having an electronic rota can help make things fairer, help us to spot gaps quicker and give us a much better plan
  • Reviewing how we pay for extra work that gets our waiting lists down; and how we pay for people being on-call.

Who is this for?

What we’re doing is trying to create a group of people who understand our ways of working, and how things are done around here in order to deliver excellent, safe and compassionate care. Everyone needs to be aware.

When will this be available?


We’ve set out our plan for agency and bank people for the coming year. This is part of our bigger, overall workforce plan which has been shared with our regulators, NHS Improvement (NHSI).

How do I find out more?

There’s loads of stuff on our intranet about bank and agency working. We have a team called Flexible Workforce who deal specifically with all of this.

Find out more