Get to Know Dilek Kale, Category Manager at NHS London Procurement Partnership

Dilek Kale

The ‘Get to Know’ series showcases staff from around the NHS Workforce Alliance (NHS WA) to give you a glimpse of the variety of roles in our organisation and the people who perform them.

This month, we’re pleased to introduce Dilek Kale, Category Manager at NHS London Procurement Partnership.

What is your background?  

I am a Law graduate who decided not to pursue law any further, and after a year of deliberating whether I wanted to complete my LPC, I started my first office job in a recruitment agency as a compliance officer where I became a compliance manager. I then took a leap of faith as I felt I had accomplished all that was possible. I’d say I was very shy at the beginning of my career but that has changed as a result of the roles I have undertaken where most of them were client facing and team managing which has helped me gain a range of experience from different perspectives.

What is your role within the NHS Workforce Alliance, and what does it involve?  

I am a Category Manager for the NHS London Procurement Partnership Workforce team. My role consists of advising and supporting on workforce challenges to help find the best solution in reducing off-framework, building a PSL or helping find the best solutions to recruitment challenges through the number of frameworks we have available as the Workforce Alliance. I am also working with the project team for the new Clinical and Healthcare Staffing framework.  

Why are you passionate about this? 

I’d say it is because my role consists of directly and indirectly helping a wide range of people, as the solutions we implement, whether through our frameworks or working with trust colleagues directly I believe help the society which we live in. The wide range of solutions which are available also have a social value element to them which drives change and helps our communities and the environment. Seeing the hard work the front line and all other staff who have put in during the pandemic and the continuation of that work is one which makes me very proud of the NHS and drives my passion.

What is the greatest challenge you face at work?

Talking about myself here has been a challenge which I thought I wouldn’t face anytime soon. I think the biggest challenge which we all face is the demand increase across our hospitals and how we could help each other with overcoming this challenge to help deliver great patient care.

What was your first job, and how has it impacted your career?

My first job was in River Island as a Customer Services Assistant. I wouldn’t say it has helped me choose my path but I would say following on in Mango as a Personal Shopper during uni gave me the customer service skills I could build on later in my first office job as a compliance officer for AHPs. I’d say my work ethic and passion in building my career path with the help of my mentors has helped me gain skills and knowledge I needed throughout.

How would you spend a perfect day off? 

I’d say my perfect day off starts with a morning sunrise walk with a hot drink by the river (I love water although I can barely swim), followed by going to the gym and then breakfast. Later on in the day I would probably spend some time with my loved ones followed by an evening meal and a few drinks at a restaurant. I think any day that consists of laughter is a perfect day for me. 

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