Closer Look - EFM Contracts Manager (soft services)
20 September 2018
We regularly interview a different member of staff or volunteer at Southend University Hospital and gain a closer look at how they help deliver patient care at the Trust. This time we meet Nicky Kitchener, EFM Contracts Manager (soft services)
Tell us about yourself?
I started my career as a regional trainee in health service
management which gave me huge insight, knowledge and work
experience across the full range of health services in acute and
After substantive facilities roles including mental health
services, I joined Southend Hospital (21 years ago!) and have
managed a range of soft services over the years. Most recently
transport, patient staff and visitor catering, retail services,
laundry and linen and accommodation.
Outside of work I spend much of my time organising and
participating in charity fundraising. Following the untimely death
of our daughter, Sarah, eight years ago, my family set up the Sarah
Kitchener Perrow Fund, a supporter group of the Brain Tumour
Charity to provide much needed funding for high grade brain tumour
research projects and family support.
What are the best bits about your job?
Everyday is different in facilities operational services. There
are always plenty of challenges but by doing something another way
or through listening to patient, public and staff feedback you can
make continual improvements.
I firmly believe that to achieve the best outcomes it requires a
culture of everyone working together as a team based on strong
relationships, positive interactions and mutual support which I
strive to achieve through my role.
What work achievements are you most proud
I take great pride in seeing improved Patient Led Assessments of
the Care Environment (PLACE) scores and especially the individual
patient assessor feedback. Also staff achievements! I'm always
proud to see progression for staff I have mentored based on
personal experience of NHS services as well as service
How did it feel winning a Hospital Heroes
It was a great honour to be nominated as a Hospital Hero and
especially winning the Chairman's Outstanding Achievement Award
2017. This was most unexpected and humbling to be recognised in
this way. It is testament to the amazing teams I work with who show
exceptional commitment and support. It was a big morale boost for