Vets4Pets Northampton Hospital

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  • Sectors Small Animal
  • Posted Jobs 0
  • Flexible work environment YES
  • Support for global candidates/visas YES
  • Remote/work from home NO
  • Benefits YES
  • Company overview

    Organisational background

    Vets4Pets Northampton was opened on 7th December 2009 by vet Jenny and nurse Davinia. Jenny and Davinia had worked together for a number of years in another practice in the area, and when Jenny decided that she wanted to open her own practice, she could think of no-one better than her friend and colleague Davinia.

    Fast-forward to today, and the team now consists of a team of nearly 50 staff: vets, nurses, VCAs, receptionists and a practice manager. The practice achieved RCVS Hospital Accreditation in 2018 after running 24/7 for several years.

    We are one of the few hospitals to have ALL SIX awards in the RCVS Practices Standards Scheme: all rated as OUTSTANDING, which we’re really proud about.

    In 2019 we won both the VMG/SPVS Wellbeing Award (medium practice) and the Vets4Pets New Graduate Practice of the Year award. Being the best is so important to us. Read more about why we won here.

    We are the most successful all-female JVPs within the Vet Group ( 415 practices). We’re really proud of that.

    Our day team cover the hours 8 am – 7 pm, and the OOH team cover 7 pm – 8 am. We don’t do OOH as “on-call”. A shift is a shift: these are your hours for the week. If the OOH shift is quiet and you sleep while at work – great. If it’s busy during the day – walk out when your shift ends; there is someone else there to pick up your case or an incoming emergency. We are a team – there is always someone just starting their shift to take over from you so you go home on time whatever your shift pattern is.

    We have outgrown our current building and are moving to a brand new, purpose-built hospital in Spring 2022. This will have three theatres, a large colleague area, a quiet room, four wards, 10 consulting rooms and lots more.

    We have a vision for what vet hospitals should look like to best serve their staff, community and. the environment. We are already “outstanding” across all 6 awards in the RCVS Practices Standards Scheme.

    Our new hospital will:

    • be paper-free
    • have a dedicated pharmacy dispensing all medication and taking payments, leaving more time for vets and nurses to spend with the patients
    • have a state-of-the-art video phone and messaging system, meaning we can interact with our clients really easily – giving inpatient updates and for client advice.

    We have a great team already who are so excited about the move, and would love you to join us!

    Organisation aims & mission

    To be the best first opinion veterinary hospital in Northamptonshire, providing great 24-hour care for our patients.

    To provide a fun, safe and inclusive working environment for all team members to grow in their roles and careers.

  • Company values
    • Develop ourselves, each other and the hospital.
    • Flexibility.
    • Support each other.
    • Individuality.
    • Be the best.

    We like training and upskilling people. Jenny and the vet team have mentored lots of vets over the years: from grads to experienced clinicians who have lost their confidence over COVID. We are used to helping you to learn new skills. See our article in the Vet Record here.

    If you are a nurse fed up with doing reception or washing kits then come for a day at ours. The nurses take radiographs, help run theatre and input into GA protocols, assist feeding tubes/ chest drains and so much more. We believe in using your skills to the max. We have VCAs to do the other roles. RVNs should be doing RVN jobs.

    We also believe in promoting in-house: both our Head RVN and her deputy started their careers with us. If you have ambition we will progress you.

    CPD is funded for all team members, with no financial cap. If you’re interested in it and it enhances the offering for our patients, then we fully support you. Vets get five fully-paid days off per year and RVNs two fully-paid days off for CPD. If you want to do a certificate -great! Let’s pay for that too and give you time off for study leave for your exams. Over the past year Vets Marise, Charlotte and Eve have all passed their certs, and RVN Vicky is just doing her certificate exams.

    Flexibility is really important to us. We don’t use a one-size-fits-all, old-school way of creating a rota or having all team members on the same shift pattern or contract. We recognise the need for an individual, tailored approach for every person that comes to work for us. Happy team members give their best every day.

    We embrace the individuality of every single one of the team: each and every person adds value and we love that we are all different.

    We have four mental health first aiders (MHFAs) on the team and use Occupational Health to support colleagues with injuries or illnesses to get back to work. We have a very open and honest culture, and mental health has no stigma here: we want to support the team with whatever they’re going through. Our MHFAs are there to support the whole team, and each other too. We also have an employee assistance programme with access to free counselling sessions, financial assistance and advice.


    Watch back our New Graduate Employers Panel

  • What makes your organization a great place to work?

    Yes, we are “a corporate”, but we’re all run on the ground by individuals, not by a head office. We have a support office that will do all the things behind the scenes so that we can get on with the day job. In fact, there are some great perks:

    • You can always talk to someone at the support office if you have issues you don’t want to talk to the JVPs about
    • Moving to a different part of the country? Transfer within the group and you don’t have to complete a probationary period at your new role.
    • Plus there are lots more benefits as a result of being more structured and part of a bigger organisation.

    We don’t ask our vets and nurses to talk care plans, we don’t hard-sell dentals and we don’t push pre-GA bloods on neuters.

    We are a standalone, not in-store. The vets have no idea what they turnover: it isn’t important. We don’t give bonuses: we pay you fairly from the start.

    Clinical meetings happen monthly and are often joint with input from both vets and nurses.

    We fully embrace individuality and diversity amongst the team members here. Flexibility is key here as well, and we will work with a candidate to find the right fit and balance between home and working lives. We have many team members here on different contracts and different shifts to ensure that everyone is happy with their work/life balance.

    We match vets and nurses to their area of interest – want to do nurse clinics – we will rota you on. Want more inpatient time? You will have more days of this. The vets all get at least one full day a week in theatre – but if you have an op you want to do we will keep an eye out for one and swap you into ops to do it.

    We start the day with a whole vet column reserved for “book on the day” appointments. Weekends are all “book on the day,” so we start the shift with an empty diary. Appointments are all 15 minutes, with the last hour of your shift being kept free for phone calls and inpatients. It’s rare to have to see “extras on the side.”

    During COVID, one of our RVNS was so proud of our team they nominated us for an award (which we won) – The Rose of Northamptonshire Award for outstanding effort.

     Organizational Showreel

    • SPVS Wellbeing Award – read more about why we won here.
    • The Magic of Mentorship – see our article in the Vet Record here.
  • Describe an ideal employee at your organization

    We like vets and nurses to “have a go” at things. We encourage you to try new things. We have lots of people who can show you and be there while you learn. We don’t refer much – as we have 24/7 vets and nurses on site we don’t need to.

    We want vets and nurses to help us grow. As these are new and additional roles we can flex to you.

    At the moment all the vets and nurses work different shift patterns – some do just day shifts (FT or PT), some do just OOH , some do a mix. The rota is therefore complex, but we make it work so everyone is in the pattern they want. We can fit around you as we have a large team already and these are new, additional roles. We believe Full time should be 38 hours per week – not 40 or 44 plus on call…… 38. End of.

    We are looking for people who love being vets and nurses – our team are genuinely proud to come to work – we want similar people to join us.

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