In our world, we always put pets first. Now, alongside this, we want to concentrate on you - the vets, nurses and support teams at the heart of the profession.
Project Listen was about connecting with colleagues, hearing their stories, learning and creating an agenda for change.
We’ve seen how the profession has changed through the pandemic, and it’s obvious there is still a great passion within teams across the UK.
This report will highlight the key outcomes and, importantly, outline the changes Vets4Pets and Companion Care Vets will try to implement as a result.
The goal was always to kick off a profession-wide conversation to challenge the status quo and strive for a better working environment for all colleagues within our profession. We hope that this is just the start of the conversation.
What we heard
Vets, nurses and support teams from across the profession were all evenly represented throughout the responses with key themes emerging across wellbeing, the challenges of resource levels in practice, working hours and increasing demand from clients.
Health and wellbeing
A poor work/life balance has had an impact on the health and wellbeing of practitioners, which has been further exacerbated by increased demand for veterinary services.
Stemming from increased demand and shortages of veterinary professionals, significant numbers of colleagues in the veterinary profession claim to have a poor work/life balance resulting from overtime and a lack of breaks.
The value of some benefits is not being seen by practitioners; better pension contribution, income protection and sick pay are the preferred benefits according to the survey.
Our commitments and next steps
BVA Good Workplace Code
Adopting the GVWC as the foundation for positive progression across the organisation will bring focus, practicality and achievable outcomes that can lead to positive and enduring change; a Good Veterinary Workplace.
Health and wellbeing
The health and wellbeing of our colleagues is foremost in our minds when we come to committing to change. We are listening to our teams and the wider profession to ensure that their working environment is the best it can be.
We've had some great feedback on work/life balance within the results, both positive and less positive, which will allow us to develop a range of initiatives that we believe begin to answer some of this feedback. This is just the start of our change journey.
Whilst we pride ourselves on being able to offer great benefits to all our colleagues, we will continue to ensure they are in line, or better, than that of the wider profession.