Blog: NMC Council recruitment for Scotland and new associate roles

Philip Graf, NMC Chair, talks about our new council recruitment and being on the NMC Council.

The strength of our Council comes from the different voices around our table – our combined experience, expertise and skills help us to make the right collective decisions for you, the 700,000 plus nurses, midwives and nursing associates we regulate, and the UK population we serve.

If you relish the prospect of helping shape the work of your regulator, this may be your chance to join us. I am pleased to tell you that we are now looking for one new Council member who lives or works wholly or mainly in Scotland and who can bring midwifery expertise to our work. We are also launching an innovative new scheme to appoint two new Associates.

Our role, as the NMC’s governing Council, is to set the strategic direction and then hold the executive team to account for delivery. We’re made up of six nurses, midwives or nursing associates and six lay members.

As a Council, we work collaboratively with the Executive to fulfil our common purpose: to promote and uphold high professional standards in nursing and midwifery, protect the public and inspire public confidence. All of us around the table contribute towards realising our common vision of: safe, effective and kind nursing and midwifery practice, and improving everyone’s health and wellbeing. And everything we do is founded in our shared values of being fair, kind, collaborative and ambitious.

As Chair of the Council, I am determined that our Council should better reflect the diversity of the professions we regulate, and the public we all serve. So we are particularly keen to hear from black, Asian and minority ethnic registrant colleagues for these roles.

Council member – Scotland

We are working with midwifery leaders, including the Royal College of Midwives, to recruit a member who lives or works wholly and mainly in Scotland with midwifery expertise. This will help to ensure that the midwifery perspective is always heard at the highest levels of the NMC.

Lorna Tinsley, who bring current midwifery expertise, will leave us at the end of September; you can read about Lorna’s account of being a Council member here.

The new member will replace Rob Parry, who has been our member for Scotland for the last 6 years. You can read a blog about Rob’s experience on the Council and why he joined here.

Earlier this year we successfully appointed four high quality dedicated individuals, two lay and two registrant members who will help us deliver our ambitious vision.  But an ongoing challenge in our selection processes is finding new colleagues with the requisite exposure to strategic decision making and board-level experience and with midwifery expertise or from BAME backgrounds. We want to address this by giving talented individuals from different backgrounds the opportunity to develop those board level skills and expertise through our two new associate roles.

Associate scheme

The two new associates will be able to contribute to our discussions and participate in our activities alongside Council members. I’m confident the experience gained working with our Council will help equip them to play influential and positive roles in the health and social care sectors now and in the years to come, whether that next step is with the NMC or elsewhere.

This is an exciting prospect for me, as Chair of the Council, to have the opportunity to work with and develop talent, supporting the next generation of potential Council/non-executive board members. And I hope the idea of working with a team dedicated to such an ambitious vision is equally exciting for our prospective candidates.

If you’re interested in joining us, you can find out more about what to expect and how to apply by reading the candidate briefings for the Scotland role or the Associate role, and if you’ve any questions we’re very happy to help.

Philip Graf



Council recruitment 2020 – Being a Council member

Lorna Tinsley

I’m so proud to have spent over seven years as a Council member.

Since joining in 2013, I’ve been mindful that the role of a registrant member on the Council is not to represent the professions but to take key decisions in the interests of public protection and public confidence in those professions. However, to do this effectively the voices of both the midwifery and nursing professions must be heard.

As a midwife, it’s been a real privilege to have played my part in ensuring that the voice of midwifery continues to be heard and valued, as a Council member and as a member of the former Midwifery Committee and subsequently on the Midwifery Panel. The Panel continues to ensure that the NMC receives advice and input which reflects the practice of midwifery across the UK and the impact of that practice on women, babies and their families. The voices of lay and other registrant Council members, the Executive team and our stakeholders enrich discussions, bring alternative views and ensure a fresh perspective on every aspect of debate. As a result, our combined expertise and input ensures the Council is able to reach informed collective decisions for the benefit of all.

During my time on the Council, I have had the opportunity to be part of major initiatives which have shaped our professions. Highlights include revision of the Code and development and introduction of revalidation and our new Strategy and values. I also played a key part in securing production of disaggregated midwifery fitness to practise data so that this can be more easily interrogated; and most dear to my heart, the new and transformational Future Midwife standards – that will equip midwives of the future with the knowledge, skills, values and behaviours to meet the individual needs and choices of women, babies and their families for generations to come.

I have found the Council to be a respectful listener to the voice of midwifery. Through stakeholder engagement and debate, the unique identity of the midwifery profession has been strengthened, without weakening the relationship with nursing.

I have thoroughly enjoyed every minute of my time on the Council and would highly recommend it. If you think you might be suitable, please do apply.

Rob Parry

One of the biggest benefits and rewards of being on the Council is the learning that you gain from the colleagues you work alongside: fellow council members (registrant or lay), executive and governance colleagues all bring knowledge, skills and perspectives to the table which are insightful and valuable.

When I reflect back on my initial motivation to apply, it stemmed from my desire to be part of 'making a difference' to the profession that I am passionate about. How does being on the Council achieve this? By contributing to critical Council discussions and decisions on developing strategies for the future direction of the professions, including approval of the new Standards of Proficiency for the Future Nurse and Future Midwife. It is a true honour and source of pride to be a registrant Council member.

As a nurse working and living in Scotland it’s a privilege to be the member for Scotland and bring my perspective to the Council. It provides a unique opportunity to engage with professional issues at a UK wide level. I regularly share excellent practices we have in education, clinical practice and research in Scotland, as well as informing on national perspectives and health and social care policies. This contributes to shaping the strategic decision making of the NMC as a UK wide regulator.