Freedom to Speak up Organisation of the Year

image-placeholder.pngFreedom to Speak Up was a key recommendation from Sir Robert Francis’ Freedom to Speak Up Review in response to the Mid-Staffordshire scandal and is now an integral part of the Secondary Care sector. Over 12,000 cases were brought to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in trusts over the past 18 months, with guardian roles also established in independent sector organisations and Arm’s-Length Bodies.

Entrants will need to detail examples of how their organisation has addressed issues raised by workers, and how they have embedded the learning. Judges will be interested in how the culture of the organisation supported the worker to speak up and how the leadership of the organisation has embraced the opportunity to improve.



Any organisation in the healthcare sector that can demonstrate the impact of someone in a speaking up role is welcome to enter this award. This includes providers and trusts, regulators and arms-length bodies, private hospital providers, care homes, CCGs, GP practices and charities. 

Judging Criteria :


  • A clear explanation of how the organisation has developed their speaking up culture and embedded the role of the Guardian, champion or advocate or anyone in a speaking up role
  • Outline an example of someone speaking up and the impact on the individual, their team and the organisation
  • What specific steps did the organisation take to enable the worker to speak up and what barriers were experienced?


  • Evidence on the success of the initiative, with examples of innovation and excellence, including any unattributed or confidential testimonials from workers
  • Evidence of change in working practices or structures as a direct result of speaking up and how the organisation can demonstrate they have taken steps to listen well


  • A dedication to a supportive culture which has demonstrably spread throughout the organisation and to all aspects of its work
  • Evidence which clearly demonstrates that speaking up is becoming business as usual in part, or all, of the organisation


  • Evidence that speaking up has become integral to the culture of the organisation through practice, processes and policies and the work of the Board, Executive team and others
  • Evidence of the value gained, and how this was measured, with details of how it has made a positive impact on the quality of patient care


  • Significant engagement from workers and evidence that the workforce has confidence in speaking up achieving outcomes
  • Development of a culture in which all workers know how to speak up and believe that it will be taken seriously, and used to guide improvements

Start your entry

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