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We challenge injustice, give people a voice and help improve public services

If you believe that when public services fail, mistakes should be put right and people should get justice then the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) is the place for you.

Our role is about making a difference. 

Making a difference to people’s lives and making a difference to public services.

We help improve people’s lives by making sure their voice is heard. We do this by making final decisions on complaints about the NHS in England, UK Government departments and some other public organisations. We are an independent service and do this without taking sides. 

We look into complaints where an organisation has not acted properly or fairly, or has provided a poor service, and not put things right. A single complaint can result in widespread improvements. Based on the findings from our investigations, organisations will often make lasting changes to make sure the same mistakes do not happen again.

We publish individual cases to share learning and show the devastating impact public service failings, such as the Windrush scandal, have on individuals. We also share our casework findings to help drive wider improvements in public services. This includes presenting reports to Parliament so it can hold the organisations providing those services to account. 

Watch Ombudsman Rob Behrens talk about what we do and why you should come and work for us:

Download our candidate pack

Our vision and values

Our vision is to be an exemplary public services ombudsman by providing an independent, impartial and fair complaints resolution service, while using casework to help raise standards and improve public services. Our values are:

Independence: We are independent from organisations we investigate, holding them to account for service failure.

Fairness: We listen carefully to complainants and the organisations we investigate and we make impartial and fair decisions based on relevant evidence.

Excellence: We learn from engagement with complainants and organisations we investigate to improve our accessibility, efficiency and effectiveness and the quality of our decisions.

Transparency: We communicate with those using our service and then publish information about our findings, how we are performing, and how organisations we investigate have implemented our recommendations.

Staff at PHSO writing on the board

Employee Benefits

In return for you choosing to be part of our team and committing to high performance, we want to give something back to you. As well as working with dedicated and passionate people who want to improve people’s lives, we feel it is important to reward our people well. Our benefits include: 

•    30 days holiday (plus 2.5 days statutory holiday and bank holidays)

•    A generous pension scheme

•    A comprehensive learning and development programme

•    Opportunities for career development

•    Employee assistance programme 

•    Flexible working arrangements

•    Bike loans of up to £1,000

•    Gym subsidy

Find out more about our benefits.

    An exciting time to join our team

    This is an exciting time to join PHSO as we embark on an ambitious new strategy. You can play a vital role in helping us achieve our aims so that:

    •  people who use public services have a better awareness of who we are and what we do, and can easily access our service
    • people we work with receive a high quality, empathetic and timely service, according to international ombudsman principles
    • we contribute to a culture of learning and continuous improvement, leading to high standards in public service. 

    A happy, healthy and diverse workforce

    At PHSO our motto is ‘Live well, work well’. We want to inspire, guide and support you to be your healthiest and happiest self. Equality, diversity and inclusion are vital to the way we work. We recognise the importance of having a workforce made up of individuals with their own unique identities. We strive to create an inclusive culture where:

    •    individuals are respected and treated fairly

    •    diversity is celebrated

    •    all our employees can be themselves at work and perform at their best

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    A diverse and inclusive workforce helps us understand how we can better engage with the communities we serve. We are going through an exciting growth period and are keen to welcome applications from people from diverse backgrounds.

    This includes people: 

    •    who are LGBTQI+

    •    who are from Black, Asian, mixed ethnicity and all other ethnic groups

    •    with a disability, impairment, learning difference or long-standing condition

    •    with caring responsibilities 

    •    with any other self-identified diversity

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    We are a disability confident employer playing a role in changing attitudes for the better. Any disabled applicant who meets the minimum selection criteria will automatically progress to the next stage of the recruitment process. 

    “The best piece of advice I could give to someone thinking of applying to PHSO is go for it! Whatever your background, culture, religion or social standing. If you think you can do the job, have great integrity, and are caring and respectful, then just go for it. PHSO really welcomes diversity, so if you think you might be a bit quirky, know that you’ll be welcomed and fit in great. I’m a mature in years, working class woman, who is just one of the ‘gang’ and proud to work where I do.”

    Our employee-led networks

    We encourage and support staff to participate in our employee-led networks. These networks help make PHSO an inclusive organisation and include:

    Break the Stigma – raising awareness of the importance of safeguarding mental health and wellbeing of staff in the workplace. It engenders an open culture to talk about mental health issues and is supported by a number of mental health first aiders.

    Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Forum - provides peer support for colleagues to raise issues, concerns and ideas in relation to equality, diversity and inclusion. It also promotes an open and inclusive culture where staff can celebrate diversity.

    Pride at PHSO - promotes and represents the interests of LGBT+ staff employed at PHSO, with participating open to both LGBT+ staff and allies. The group identifies and shares good practice, raises awareness and provides support, mentoring and coaching to LGBT+ staff.

    Pride at PHSO

    Our team of Wellbeing Ambassadors help us embed wellbeing activity across the organisation. They also support colleagues to use the tools and resources available in our ‘Live well, work well’ programme.