Believe in what the NHS does

by Mark Stocks

29 August 2019


Mark Stocks’ career in public service audit began after he graduated from university and wanted to give back to society. Now a partner at Grant Thornton UK, one of HFMA’s corporate partners, Mark is also a member of HFMA’s Audit and Governance committee. We spoke with him about the ways the HFMA supports its corporate partners and the importance of believing in the NHS.

How did you start your career journey?

When I came out of university I wanted to work for an organisation with a clear purpose and values and one that wanted to add something back to society. At that time the Audit Commission was in its heyday and was influencing government policy on a number of things. It fitted well with what I believed so I started with them. I have been an auditor and advisor ever since, although my roles have changed over the years.

How does the HFMA support your company and your own career development?

I came late to HFMA. It wasn’t until I moved to the Midlands 15 years ago that I became involved. Chris Calkin was director of finance at Derby NHS Foundation Trust at the time and he was a great believer in HFMA. He inspired me to become involved and I have never regretted it.

Grant Thornton are a corporate sponsor of HFMA. We sponsor most of the networks – those for providers, commissioners, chief executives, chairs, NED and lay members. I am also a member of the Governance and Audit Committee. The support from HFMA is significant. It ranges from contact and discussion with other members to specialist health, audit and accounting updates to opportunities to speak and share ideas on areas of concern and interest. I have always found HFMA to be flexible in helping me find an answer or in reaching the people I need to.

From a personal career perspective HFMA has enabled me to grow closer to the sector, getting a better understanding of issues and concerns. It has also given me the opportunity to create some strong friendships and networks, something which I value.

What’s the most important HFMA offering for you?

I like the conferences best. They combine some great content with the chance to network and meet some old friends.

How does the HFMA support its corporate partners?

HFMA are a really open organisation and give access to all the work they do. We use the sector briefings, networks and conferences to keep our people informed. We have run round tables with HFMA and have spoken at local and national events. HFMA are pretty flexible at creating new opportunities for us to speak to the sector.

What piece of advice do you have for others working with the NHS?

You need to believe in what the NHS does and share the passion of the people involved. I meet very few people in the NHS who do not care passionately about what they do and the NHS as a whole. Its important that those working with the NHS take time to give something back to it.


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