The City of Wolverhampton Council has demonstrated its commitment to the health of its workforce by receiving the prestigious Workplace Wellbeing Charter – and it is now encouraging other local employers to follow suit. Organisations which achieve the Workplace Wellbeing Charter, endorsed by Public Health England, have shown that they provide a workplace which offers good health and wellbeing to their employees – which in turn brings considerable benefits to their business.

The council received the charter award following an assessment by Health@Work. The council’s Public Health and HR teams worked together to prepare for the benchmarking visit during which Health@Work reviewed the council's policies and procedures, visited the Civic Centre, WV Active Aldersley and the Ernest Bold Resource Centre and interviewed employees about their experiences of working for the council.

They also assessed the council against eight Workplace Wellbeing Charter standards: leadership; absence management; health and safety; mental health and wellbeing; smoking and tobacco; physical activity; healthy eating; and alcohol and substance misuse.

Initiatives run by the council include offering healthchecks for employees, and improving the food offer at catering outlets, including the introduction of a salad bar and extending the range of fruit.

It also encourages employees and visitors to use the stairs rather than lifts to burn calories and introduced lunchtime activity and Weight Watchers sessions, while managers have been given training to help them identify potential mental health issues among members of the workforce.

Councillor Paul Sweet, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "The Workplace Wellbeing Charter is an opportunity for employers to demonstrate their commitment to the health and wellbeing of their workforce, and I am delighted that the City of Wolverhampton Council has received this award.

"The positive impact that employment and the workplace can have on people’s health and wellbeing is well documented, and there is strong evidence that having a healthy workforce can reduce sickness absence, lower staff turnover and boost productivity – this is good for employers, workers and the wider economy.

As well as the council, the University of Wolverhampton and the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust have also received the Workplace Wellbeing Charter.

Cllr Sweet added: "The Workplace Wellbeing Charter provides employers with an easy and clear guide on how to offer a supportive and productive environment in which employees can flourish, and I would encourage other businesses large and small to follow the lead of the council, the University of Wolverhampton and the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust in seeking this accreditation."