Sian Thomas is to join NHS Employers - the body responsible for NHS workforce issues - as deputy director with responsibility for a range of employment issues including workforce numbers, recruitment, retention and equality and diversity.
She will also take the lead in supporting NHS organisations on the employment implications of a range of policy areas including independent treatment centres and the reconfiguration of primary care trusts.
Thomas is currently director of HR and organisational development at Ashford and St Peter's Hospitals NHS Trust and is vice-chair of the NHS Employers assembly and policy board. She will be joining NHS Employers on a two-year secondment from December.
Alastair Henderson will also continue as deputy director, with responsibilities including pay negotiations and implementation, industrial relations and the NHS pension scheme review.
NHS Employers director Steve Barnett said: "Thomas will be a real asset to NHS Employers in her new role as a deputy director. She has a wealth of management experience gained at the coalface of the NHS at all levels and she will be bringing that knowledge to benefit the NHS as a whole."
The NHS Employers assembly will hold elections for a new vice-chair later in the year.