The General Optical Council (GOC) has launched its Workforce and Perceptions Survey to gain insights on its registrants’ views of job satisfaction, working conditions, future plans, and of the GOC overall.

The survey is being run independently by Enventure Research to ensure all responses remain confidential. Last year just under 4,000 GOC registrants responded.

Last year’s findings revealed that the majority of respondents (62%) were satisfied with their role and that 40% planned to gain additional qualifications/skills over the next 12 – 24 months. However, new data highlighted that 41% of respondents experienced harassment, bullying, or abuse from patients and service users in the last 12 months.

In response to last year’s findings, the GOC issued a joint sector statement committing to a zero-tolerance approach to these types of negative behaviours. It also issued more guidance for registrants to help them complete their CPD requirements and is consulting on strengthened standards of practice in this area.

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Steve Brooker, GOC Director of Regulatory Strategy, said:

“Last year’s survey provided us with important insights about registrants’ experiences, particularly in relation to bullying, harassment, abuse and discrimination. We’re keen to learn if there has been a change in registrants’ views and experiences over the last year so we can better understand how they feel about their job and career.

The findings from this year’s survey will help inform GOC policy and assist other optical organisations and government departments who then use the data to identify trends in the workforce across the UK.

We want to hear from as many students and fully qualified registrants as possible to ensure the report is an accurate representation of optometrists and dispensing opticians views and experiences across the UK.”

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