KPMG and PwC with NHS Leadership Academy Bevan programme

People and Leadership

We’re living in a world with major disruptive events happening regularly. Leadership development programmes must mirror the agility required to navigate this disruption. A particularly compelling example is that of the NHS Leadership Academy’s Nye Bevan programme. A vital development course for senior healthcare leaders that was redesigned for virtual delivery during Covid within six weeks and continues to evolve in content and delivery methods to reflect the challenges facing NHS Leaders. Launched in 2013, the programme supports senior healthcare leaders who aspire to become Executive Directors. It sits at the heart of NHS talent management in England, building leadership skills through expert-facilitated inputs, practical exercises, and peer-assessment.

When Covid hit, the programme paused. KPMG and PwC, alongside the Academy, needed to innovatively adapt the programme. The subsequent redesign accommodated the new reality, using the latest learning technology methodologies, and harnessing insights of experts from across the health sector and beyond.

The challenge for KPMG and PwC, in collaboration with the Academy, was to reimagine a programme previously delivered largely face-to-face into a virtual offering. Our objective was to reconfigure the programme so that it lost none of its impact, immediacy and accessibility – while giving participants the tailored learning support needed at a time when the NHS had never been more challenged.

Our mantra was to work collectively, in the best interests of participants, to restart the programme fast. We did so whilst adhering to the challenging standards senior NHS leaders need.

The quality and feedback from participants has remained excellent (94% success rate). The programme, now in hybrid form, provides an agile delivery approach in response to ever-evolving challenges of NHS leaders. We continue to adapt the programme, reflecting the current landscape of the healthcare industry. KPMG, PwC and Academy colleagues are incredibly proud of this collaborative success story – ongoing for healthcare leaders, with the flexibility the sector needs.

This was a genuinely collaborative effort. While KPMG owned the overall project plan; programme structure; and expert faculty preparation, PwC updated ‘Broadening Horizons’ and ‘Making the Case for Change’ modules for a virtual audience. The Academy, meanwhile, ran the participant liaison, help desk and digital teams. Importantly, our working groups meant we could support each other and ensure alignment in the best interests of participants.

Some 96% of participants were able to continue with the programme during the pandemic and there was a 94% success rate of sessions across the programme. The increased flexibility meant that around 500 senior leaders in healthcare in England were supported in their leadership since 2020. Those people can now make an appreciable impact in their organisation – with a powerful peer network to support and challenge them in the coming years.

Feedback has been excellent and the programme, now in hybrid form reflects the new working world. The programme’s flexibility allows it to move to virtual delivery whenever required, including during heatwaves, transport strikes or in response to a pandemic which hasn’t fully disappeared.


View the KPMG and  PwC profiles in the MCA Members Directory