Emma-Seamons-Head-of-HREmma Seamons has become Canford Healthcare’s new Head of Human Resources (HR).

Emma knows the organisation (and our homes well), having joined our HR team in 2017 as HR business partner. In this busy role she has spent the last seven years supporting our management and homes’ teams, including recruitment and employee engagement, implementing and improving processes and systems, and facilitating the provision of learning and development and providing . It’s a role that she very much enjoyed and which brought her into regular contact with staff and residents across our 11 homes.

“I absolutely loved it,” she enthuses. “I really enjoy going out and meeting people in the homes, and understanding how it all works from a commercial perspective.”

As Head of Human Resources Emma’s remit is, of course, much wider now, encompassing the more strategic side of supporting the business, ensuring compliance with company policy and procedures and leading our HR team. Her aim is for the HR function to offer a quality service to our homes, delivering best practice in areas such as recruitment and retention, succession planning, reward and recognition, learning and development, employee engagement and employee relations.

Emma is an experienced HR professional who has worked for a variety of organisations such as, Integrated Care 24 (including NHS 111 and its out-of-hours service), Great Ormond Street Hospital, John Lewis, the Post Office and British Telecom, Kent County Council and Kent Police. Over the years – and while working full time – Emma has acquired several heavyweight qualifications, including an MSc in Professional Practice from the University of Kent, a CIPD Level 7 Advanced Diploma in HR Practice and a CMI Level 7 Award in Strategic Approaches to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.

Despite her experience of other sectors, she very much enjoys working in health and social care because “every day brings variety, and it is great to work alongside people who make a real and positive difference for our residents”.

She adds: “Coming into care really is a viable and satisfying career pathway and should be seen as such, whether you go down the clinical or management route or specialise in something else such as activities. It is important for us to create a strong learning and development function that increases our employees’ skills and knowledge, so they can provide even better care to residents, and also to create wider career paths for everyone.”

Emma grew up in Medway with her father, an off-licence manager, and her mother who worked for the Post Office. In fact, Emma met husband Malcolm (who now works for NatWest) while working at the Post Office herself. The couple have been married for 29 years and have a 15-year-old rescue cat called Ebony.

Away from work (and studying), Emma and Malcolm love visiting castles and other historic buildings. They have also travelled all over Europe (and particularly love the Austrian capital Vienna), as well as further afield. Emma is especially passionate about wildlife and conservation, and one of her favourite activities is to walk by the sea. In Mexico she enjoyed seeing wildlife as diverse as green turtles, monitor lizards, manatees, crocodiles, tarantulas, jungle wasps, leaf cutter ants, humming birds, raccoons and spider monkeys. No stranger to adventure, she’s also enjoyed swimming with dolphins, hot air ballooning, travelling on the Orient Express and abseiling in Chatham Dockyard.