IPEM’s Workforce Intelligence Unit turns 10!


A SPECIAL unit which gathers workforce data in the medical physics and clinical engineering (MPCE) community is celebrating its 10th anniversary.

IPEM’s Workforce Intelligence Unit (WIU) has clocked up a decade of running tri-annual and bi-annual surveys across the MPCE specialisms, including radiotherapy, nuclear medicine, diagnostic radiology and radiation protection, clinical and rehabilitation engineering, magnetic resonance imaging, ultrasound and non-ionising radiation, and physiological measurement.

The surveys have built up the WIU’s extensive knowledge of the workforces and are now gathering even more information covering Clinical Scientists, clinical technologists, Medical Physics Experts, along with training and recruitment information.

Workforce calculators

The data is being used to build recommended workforce calculators, giving departments and services a guide to staffing a comprehensive service, responding to calls for evidence and assisting in advocating for the profession. IPEM members can also request bespoke reports to gain insight into the workforce and use the data to assist with individual cases for increasing staffing provisions.

Current and planned surveys by the unit include:

  • A Nuclear Medicine Physics Workforce Survey is open until 13 October and anyone running a nuclear medicine service who has not yet received an invitation to respond should contact adam@ipem.ac.uk
  • An Optical Radiation Physics Workforce Survey is launching on 5 October
  • A Physiological Measurement Workforce Survey will open on 18 October
  • The comprehensive Bi-annual Radiotherapy Census, capturing the whole of the Radiotherapy Physics Workforce, is due to open on 16 November.

Highlighting staff shortages

Dr Jemimah Eve, IPEM’s Head of Workforce Intelligence and Training, said: ‘In the 10 years of the WIU we have produced a multitude of reports for the MPCE sector, which have consistently highlighted the serious staff shortages in many areas.

‘We have also led to changes being made to the National Shortage Occupation List and successfully made the case to the Office for National Statistics that medical physicists be recognised formally under the Standard Occupation Classification as a distinct health profession, whereas previously they had been inaccurately included under medical radiographers.

‘I’m very proud of the work the unit has done and we look forward to continuing to produce surveys and reports for the benefit not only of our members in particular but to raise the profile of healthcare scientists as a whole.’

Dr Robert Farley, IPEM’s President, said: ‘The work the intelligence unit has done in the last 10 years is phenomenal, to provide both essential workforce data and to help shine a light on the workforce shortages across healthcare science.

‘I look forward to the unit going from strength to strength in the coming years.’

The unit is currently recruiting for a new Workforce Intelligence Manager, and the deadline for applications is 9 October.

IPEM Workforce Intelligence
Workforce Intelligence Manager vacancy