RepsDirect No 390 - 2 September 2005

Head of Health, Gail Cartmail General Secretary, Derek Simpson

KSF Q & A update on KSF
The NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework
- A Resource for Representatives and Members:
Frequently Asked Questions and useful contacts document - Updated August 2005

The Knowledge and Skills Framework Group (KSFG, formerly the KSFDG, the KSF Development Group) have permitted us to issue their ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ document to members and representatives - as widely as possible. Some of you may have already received a copy at regional events.

What is the document for?

The document includes many of the basic questions that concern staff about the KSF.

While some colleagues are already working hard on developing KSF outlines, using the excellent job descriptions they have previously developed in partnership for job evaluation, some Trusts are finding it less easy to get all the information out around the KSF, and therefore to meet targets.

This document is useful for dispelling some of the basic myths that might arise. It is most useful for representatives to issue to colleagues who have little, or limited knowledge about the KSF, or for addressing questions arising from short Trust awareness sessions. It does not replace the very valuable help that KSF Leads can provide, they are the local experts in your Trust.

Although this document is long, it is arranged in a logical fashion, addressing separate areas of concern. NB: In order to conserve resources, the document should be copied double-sided where it is necessary to issue it on paper.

What is the document for?

The last page of the document shows some useful websites and contact details to help you further.

If you wish to access the document directly, it is available from, follow links for workforce themes, retaining and developing staff and agenda for change.

The full address is

Activity around KSF

Some professional groups have been working very hard to produce guidance on developing KSF outlines for posts within their career structures. However, outlines must be developed locally using robust job descriptions, since they are going to be used by people in actual posts.

There will be mechanisms for ‘consistency checking’ outlines within your Trust (possibly the KSF steering group, or KSF Leads, together with HR or Organisational Development Departments).

The KSFG is now receiving some very good examples of outlines, developed in partnership, and containing real examples and areas of application, for various posts. These will be placed onto the e-KSF ‘national library’ shortly. They are still, however, only examples.

Union Learning Representatives

In order to ensure that all our friends and colleagues receive the individual support they will need during roll-out, and when the KSF is implemented, we need a good network of Union Learning Representatives (ULRs). If you are interested in your own development and that of your colleagues, or know someone who is, please talk to your Regional Learning Organiser, (contact your Regional Office for their details).

Useful information about Agenda for Change and the NHS Knowledge & Skills Framework is also available from the following websites and contacts:

To register for regular updates on Agenda for Change and other NHS information from Amicus, e-mail: use the search facility using key words to find out all the latest information. - for the electronic (on-line) KSF tool, including updated information, training and resources . - updated from the ‘’ website - needs some time and effort to find what you are looking for! Try under ‘Policy and Guidance’ tab and keep choosing agenda for change. Or, the full link is: .

Your professional body may have useful info (websites and journals) eg Community Practitioners & Health Visitors’ Association (CPHVA), Family of Psychology, Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists, Guild of Healthcare Pharmacists, etc.

Your workplace representative or steward is your first port of call for specific issues relating to your organisation or Trust. If they cannot help, they should refer the matter to your Regional Office.

The following people are also an additional resource for help with the KSF, learning reps, CPD and all aspects of learning within the NHS:

Martin Wright, NE Region NHS Learning Organiser
3rd Floor, 15-17 Grey Street, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE1 6EE
Office: 0191 230 2110, Mobile: 07768 931 242

Ian Scott, Eastern Region NHS Learning Organiser
396-398 Dunstable Road, Luton, Beds LU4 8JT
Office: 01582 576 271, Mobile: 077689 313 306

Kate Oultram, NW Region NHS Learning Organiser
3 Acton Square, Salford M5 4NY
Office: 0161 745 7300, Mobile: 07919 325 367

OR : Contact your Regional Office for your own Regional Learning Organiser who works across all the Amicus sectors on every aspect of the learning agenda.
Regional Office contact details can be found on

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