Patient in waiting room

  • Understand the needs of your staff and managers.
  • Meet and engage regularly with key stakeholders.
  • Act on engagement feedback.

Understand the needs of your staff and managers

Staff engagement is a key part of delivering a robust health and wellbeing programme. 

To help understand your staff, use the data already available, such as the staff survey and your sickness absence data. Engage with your staff directly and ask them what they think and what they would like. It’s important to engage with staff on how sickness absence is coded and how to avoid using ‘not known’ across the organisation. 

This gives you the opportunity, to learn, respond and share what you have done to support their ideas. 

You can learn more about staff engagement on our web pages. 

Meet regularly with and involve key stakeholders including occupational health (OH) and union reps

There are lots of different people across your organisation who should be involved in sickness absence prevention and management. 

You should engage with staff side, OH, physiotherapy, communications, human resources, chaplaincy, health and safety, risk and legal, public health, finance and organisational development. 

You can also work with your local community to make the best use of available public services. Frequent meetings to review objectives, data, actions and key messages are helpful to review progress and keep everyone up to date and engaged. 

Partnership working is critical in ensuring the success of your sickness absence approach. Build strong, forward-focused relationships by: 

  • ensureing staff side representatives are involved as a key stakeholder when creating and reviewing strategies and policies
  • seeking best practice from the unions' national programmes for health and wellbeing – for example the Royal College of Midwives’ Caring for You campaign.

Find out more about partnership working on our web pages.

Act on engagement feedback

It is important to give staff the opportunity to shape improvements. Gathering feedback is essential to ensure that policies, procedures and training are fit for purpose. It is important to ensure feedback is listened to, considered in terms of impact, and actions agreed in response are carried out. It is helpful to be transparent on feedback. Many organisations adopt a ‘you said, we did’ approach as this reinforces the value of staff providing feedback. This can help improve staff engagement and wellbeing in your organisation.

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