Wellbeing toolkit

Civil Service People
Survey 2012
Wellbeing: a toolkit for action
February 2013
Wellbeing in the Civil Service People Survey
What do the wellbeing questions measure?
Acting on your results: five action points for wellbeing
Further wellbeing resources
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office
Wellbeing in the Civil Service People
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office
Measuring wellbeing
in the CSPS shows
us what the individual
gets out of our work
on engagement
Engagement is a measure of an employee’s emotional response to working for their
organisation, evidence shows that higher engagement is correlated with improved
outcomes for the organisation as well as enhanced levels of wellbeing for the individual. 1
Experiences of
Our traditional description of the benefit
of focussing on employee engagement
has tended to focus on the
organisational benefits...
...research shows that work is a key
influencer of individuals’ levels of
wellbeing, but in order to understand
our impact we need to measure it.
1. A review of the latest evidence on the relationship between employee engagement and organisational outcomes can be found at:
http://cdn1.engageforsuccess.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/The-Evidence.pdf which follows the 2009 Government commissioned
report MacLeod D and Clarke N (2009) Engaging for Success: Enhancing Performance through Employee Engagement, London:
Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Summary of findings
Cabinet Office
Promoting wellbeing
in the Civil Service
will benefit our
employees and set
an important example
 Wellbeing at work is the consequence of
an interaction between the working
environment, the nature of the work and
the individual.
 Responsibility for improving wellbeing
should sit at the organisation level; we
should also encourage employees to take
responsibility for their own wellbeing.
“A government lead in promoting
wellbeing in its own workforce would
be win-win: besides benefiting the
considerable number of public sector
employees and the performance of its
own business, it would set an
important example to the private
Foresight Mental Capital and Wellbeing
Project, 2008
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office
What do the wellbeing questions
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office
The wellbeing
questions measure
our employees’ levels
of individual
subjective wellbeing
Measuring our employees’ wellbeing shows that this is something we care about, above and
beyond what they can contribute to the business.
Subjective wellbeing concerns people’s self-reported wellbeing, aiming to measure how
people think and feel, rather than relying on objective indicators (such as educational
achievement, employment, or material wellbeing).
Survey questions that ask people to evaluate their own wellbeing allow for individual
differences in terms of values and identity to be expressed. For example, one person may
feel that their salary has the greatest impact on their life satisfaction, while for another, family
relationships may be more important.
The wellbeing questions can be used in conjunction with the existing engagement questions
to provide us with a more complete picture of Civil Servants’ psychological health at work.
This will allow organisations to develop interventions that will deliver benefits at both the
organisational and the individual level.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office
They comprise
eudemonic and
 The four wellbeing questions are used by
the ONS to measure national subjective
wellbeing. They were developed with
expert academic advice and represent a
balanced approach to the measurement of
subjective wellbeing, drawing on three
main approaches.
 The evaluative approach asks individuals
to step back and reflect on their life.
 The eudemonic approach measures
individuals’ sense of meaning and purpose
in life.
 The experience approach seeks to
measure people’s positive and negative
experiences over a short timeframe to
capture people’s wellbeing on a day-today basis.
W01. Overall, how satisfied are you with your life
W02. Overall, to what extent do you feel that the things you
do in your life are worthwhile?
Eudemonic wellbeing focuses on self-realisation, and
defines wellbeing in terms of the degree to which a
person is fully operational. It evolves from pursuing
contexts and relationships that fulfill intrinsic human
needs while continually extending the self.
W03. Overall, how happy did you feel yesterday?
For the ‘experience approach’ questions, the
adjective ‘happy’ has been chosen as it is commonly
used for positive affect questions; ‘anxious’ is widely
used as an indicator of poor mental wellbeing (e.g. in
the European Social Survey).
W04. Overall, how anxious did you feel yesterday?
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office
Acting on your results: five action points
for wellbeing
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office
Our five action points
provide a range of
approaches the Civil
Service can take to
promote wellbeing
 We have put together five action points for
wellbeing, along with ideas for how to
implement them and relevant case studies
from within government.
 The action points cover universal and
 Action points one and two are directly
focused on wellbeing, while action points
three to five address the broader
workplace factors which impact on
targeted approaches, and include actions
which can be undertaken by organisations
(‘downstream’) and individual employees
Action point
Type of intervention
Promote health, wellbeing and resilience
Physical/mental health
and wellbeing
Provide good specialist support for physical and mental health
Physical/mental health
and wellbeing
Foster an organisational culture of participation, equality and
Organisational culture/
health and wellbeing
Prioritise good management
Organisational culture/
employee engagement
Create good work
Organisational culture/
employee engagement
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office 10
Action point 1:
promote health,
wellbeing and
Raise the profile of the importance of mental health and wellbeing at work.
Provide regular wellbeing or stress audits or screening through available psychometric tools
and resources (e.g. NHS wellbeing tool [see the additional wellbeing resources]).
Use nef’s Five Ways to Wellbeing to support individuals to take action to improve their own
wellbeing. The Five Ways are: Connect, Be active, Take notice, Keep learning, and Give.
Focus on information transfer and knowledge provision through campaigns, events,
articles etc.
Facilitate adoption of the Five Ways through schemes encouraging exercise,
volunteering, healthy eating, knowledge sharing etc.
Consult and engage staff to develop a simple menu of wellbeing activities and options.
Strengths-based work: encourage staff to exercise their character strengths for a short period
(there are strong links between strength-based approaches and employee engagement).
Ensure a safe and pleasant physical working environment.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office 11
Case studies:
promoting health,
wellbeing and
DWP wellbeing strategy
 DWP supports employees in the management
of their ill health or rehabilitation through:
Effective use of Attendance Management
Proactive OH Services
Maximising EAP provision
Promoting use of DWP Physiotherapy
Advice Line (PAL)
 Risk focused health and safety policies to
prevent, remove, and reduce workplace factors
that cause ill health and injury.
 Promoting healthy lifestyles through: online
information; supporting line managers to
promote HWB; and provision of Lifestyle
Management Programmes.
 DWP’s health and wellbeing strategy has
helped to reduce sickness absence from 11.1
AWDL in 2007 to 7.3 AWDL in 2012.
Wellbeing levels have remained stable, despite
a period of significant change and uncertainty.
 DWP aims to make working for the
Department a rewarding and productive
experience by improving the health,
wellbeing and engagement of its staff;
and providing a healthy, safe and
supportive environment in which to work.
It has implemented a dedicated wellbeing
strategy to ensure this is done.
 DH has made a commitment that it will
‘practice what we preach’ on wellbeing. it
was the first department in Whitehall to
sign up to the Time To Change pledge on
10 October 2012, and its Minister for
Care Services is the cross-government
champion to encourage OGDs to sign up.
 DH has also established a Health and
Wellbeing Board, chaired by a Director.
DH communications, events and tools
DH Health and Wellbeing Board
 DH hosts a health and wellbeing (HWB) staff
network including HWB Champions, and
provides access to occupational health
services and counselling services.
 The Board oversees five work streams:
Transition-specific support interventions
Emotional and Psychological Wellbeing;
Physical Wellbeing
Workplace Wellbeing
‘Practising what we preach’
 The department links with partners to cheaply
offer wellbeing workshops, stop smoking
services, physical health check events and an
annual fair on HWB.
 It works with key partners such as NHS
Choices, HASSRA, Change4Life, the Charity
for Civil Servants, Rethink Mental Illness,
Mind, and Time to Change.
 It has introduced a Carers’ Passport,
encouraging discussion with managers on how
employees with caring responsibilities can
balance work with care.
 Soon, DGs will be asked to nominate a health
and wellbeing sponsor to help promote a
culture that enables HWB within their
 DH’s 2012 CSPS results have shown a 5%
increase since 2011 in positive responses to
their question specifically asking whether the
department does a good job of promoting
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
 DH Management and Leadership
Development Programmes for SCS1 and
Grades 6 & 7, and for HEOs and SEOs will
include a health and wellbeing module.
 Health and wellbeing will be incorporated in
DH’s management skills workshops.
Cabinet Office 12
Action point 2:
provide good
specialist support for
physical and mental
health conditions
Ensure staff have access to good facilities and support including HR, Occupational Health,
Employee Assistance Programmes, counselling, CBT providers.
Ensure strong support is available for employees experiencing stress or anxiety, e.g.
counselling, or stress management training (through Occupational Health (OH) and
primary care support services).
Improve integration of primary care and OH services to support mental health and
wellbeing, including working relationships between OH providers and employers.
Intervene quickly when things go wrong, e.g. if an employee experiences stress, anxiety, or
occupational ill-health.
Introduce proactive absence management procedures, such as ‘fit’ notes, improved
access to advice and support services, management training in absence management,
rehabilitation and job retention.
Harmonisation of OH and EAP
 DWP are leading on a programme of work sponsored by CO to harmonise and modernise
Occupational Health (OH) and Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) provision across the Civil
Service in a single framework.
 The tender specification explicitly required suppliers to support the government’s wider wellbeing at
work agenda. DWP will partner with suppliers to ensure services continue to be aligned to the
principles of CS Reform, Next Generation HR and other cross-government initiatives.
 Following an extensive tendering exercise, in Oct Government Procurement Services (GPS)
announced the winning bidders as follows: Lot 1 (OH): Health Management; Atos Healthcare; Capita
Lot 2 (EAP): Atos; Health Management; Right Management; CNLR.
 The next phase is on-boarding of departments onto the Framework, who will join it as their current
contracts expire. GPS will take the lead in this, conducting departments’ mini competitions and
bundling departments together as appropriate to ensure that our large customer base can bring down
the cost of our services.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office 13
Action point 3: foster
an organisational
culture of
participation, equality
and fairness
Support employees to be positive about others’ work abilities, including opposing
discrimination based on mental or physical health status, and developing mentoring and
Change the way we think and act about mental health: sign up to the Time to Change
campaign, led by Mind, Rethink and the Institute of Psychiatry.
Promote awareness and understanding about mental health issues, and challenge
discrimination and stigma.
Ensure all employees have an equal opportunity to participate in approaches to promote
wellbeing (especially part-time workers, shift workers, and migrant workers).
Use nef’s Five Ways to Wellbeing to instigate a shift in thinking and approach to mental
health: integrate the Five Ways into staff inductions and training sessions.
Promote testimonials and leadership team endorsements; these are important in helping
others overcome taboos about discussion of mental health issues.
DVLA Changing Minds
 DVLA is aligning with national campaigns on mental health to address stigmatisation and promote
more open discussion of the importance of mental wellbeing.
 Board level support has been obtained to develop the Changing Minds campaign and the COO has
agreed to champion it.
 DVLA has developed a dedicated intranet site with information, advice and resources on mental
health, and a two hour master-class for managers. Recovery sessions have also been offered to
support those with personal experience of a mental health issue.
 Under development are an individual e-learning package; follow-on sessions for managers; and a
programme of activity to embed learning.
 Since DVLA launched the campaign in January 2012, a 28% decrease in absence lost to mental
health issues (to 31 October 2012) has been evidenced in comparison with the same period in the
previous year.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office 14
Action point 4:
prioritise good
Ensure all managers are effective and supportive: good management competencies include
participation, delegation, constructive feedback, monitoring and coaching.
Use the HSE’s stress management competency indicator tool, which lists management
competencies for preventing and reducing stress at work.
Training for managers in social and interpersonal skills, recognising the impact of
management on employee health and wellbeing.
Managers should be sensitive to indications of mental distress, and open to discuss and
resolve issues early. They should also understand when to refer employees to
professional or other sources of help and support.
Managers should develop their emotional intelligence (EI), involving self-awareness,
self-management, social awareness, and relationship management.
Managers’ ability to manage teams with flexible working patterns should be developed.
Recruitment, development, rewarding and promotion of managers to recognise and promote
supportive management skills.
Ensure the organisation has visible senior leadership, accountable managers, and systems of
monitoring and measurement that embed continuous improvement.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office 15
Case studies:
prioritising good
 DFID has created a foundation for
emphasising good, supportive
management by introducing a staff
engagement exercise as a mandatory
part of its Senior Civil Servant recruitment
DFID SCS recruitment exercise
 To develop and embed supportive
management behaviours, HMRC has
developed the People Impact
Assessment (PIA), a two-level tool that
ensures people impacts are considered
and acted on during planning and
implementation of change.
HMRC People Impact Assessment
 DFID has introduced a staff engagement
exercise as a mandatory part of the SCS
recruitment process.
 The PIA was developed to help leaders and
managers think through the implications of
change as part of HMRC’s work to improve
levels of engagement.
 The candidate’s objective is to interact with a
small group of staff acting as their ‘new team’,
to better understand a set of recent People
Survey results and identify some possible
 It provides a guide for leaders and managers
that prompts and signposts, and assurance at
strategic level that people impacts have been
identified and considered alongside other
impacts, such as financial and performance.
 This exercise is assessed together with the
other elements of the recruitment process to
determine whether the candidate’s leadership
competence is sufficient to be considered
eligible for any SCS post in DFID.
 The PIA guide has been available to everyone
in the department since 12 August 2012 via
the Engagement Toolkit intranet pages. The
HMRC Employee Engagement Team are also
offering a master class on engaging people
with change based on the PIA.
 The DFID Management Board was delighted
with the process, and with the standard of the
successful candidates, all of whom
demonstrated effective staff engagement,
management and leadership skills.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
 Feedback to date has been positive. It has
shown that the PIA has been used as a
planning tool for Senior Leadership Teams,
and as a guide to plan local implementation of
Cabinet Office 16
Action point 5: create
good work
Integrate wellbeing approaches into business as usual: use nef’s Five Ways to Wellbeing as a
tool for consultation, to influence service delivery approaches, or to embed improvements in
partnership working.
Ensure job design that recognises ‘good work’ principles, including strong relationships;
fairness (procedural justice); meaningful, secure work; autonomy, control and task discretion;
balance between effort and reward; and learning and development.
Provide staff with the right to request flexible working arrangements, such as part-time
working, home-working, job sharing and flexitime. Promote an organisational culture that
supports flexible working.
FCO business efficient flexible working
 Many FCO staff, at all levels, have agreed flexible working patterns which meet the overarching
business need. The FCO makes clear that although flexible working is suitable for many posts, it is
not suitable for every job or individual and it must fit in with business and operational requirements.
 The department has identified several key considerations that influence the success of flexible
working: vision, culture, process, property, technology, and awareness of security considerations.
 The FCO has a ‘Flexible Working Network’ which aims to offer workers or staff considering flexible
work support and informal advice; an online toolkit outlines clear guidance for staff and managers.
 The FCO has identified several key benefits of business efficient flexible working: increased
efficiency, productivity and morale; more efficient use of office space; global coverage; supports
diversity; and business continuity (e.g. when big events affect local infrastructure).
 The department will, where it meets the business need, encourage staff to continue to think about
maintaining this flexibility as a part of the FCO and Civil Service Olympic legacy.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office 17
Further wellbeing resources
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Cabinet Office 18
The literature
provides advice on
how to implement a
successful high-level
wellbeing strategy
The wellbeing literature outlines a ‘wellbeing improvement cycle’, consisting of seven
stages. It is suggested that a successful high-level wellbeing strategy should follow these
1. Identify the perceived issues and programme vision: measure
current levels of wellbeing and engagement, and establish Key
Performance Indicators (KPIs).
1. Identify
issues and
2. Develop a robust business case to gain senior buy in.
7. Measure
2. Develop
3. Create a programme tailored to your business objectives: know
your business environment, align health and wellbeing to your
business strategy, and clarify your programme’s objectives.
Align your wellbeing to your engagement strategy to ensure a
truly strategic and coordinated approach.
4. Dedicate resource to your programme: evaluate your current
6. Manage
3. Create
resources and find the right business partners to deliver your
initiative (internal, external or both).
5. Communicate and launch your programme through a variety of
approaches, such as posters, regular updates/features (e.g. on
the intranet), email bulletins, training, staff events, informal
and launch
4. Dedicate
6. Ongoing programme management.
7. Measure the impact of your intervention and adjust your
approach accordingly.
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
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Civil Servants across
government have
identified ideas for
lower-level wellbeing
Trial health and wellbeing kiosks/
Wellpoint machines
 Would provide a range of physical health
metrics for individuals to track overtime and
as well as provide aggregate statistics for
 Potentially self-financing if coin operated
for a small fee.
We consulted with a cross-government group of Civil Servants who suggested wellbeing
interventions that could be taken at the lower level, within individual departments. These
include providing training on resilience, mindfulness and stress, specific support for staff
networks, and line management and leadership development.
Mindfulness workshops and leadership
 NICE approved approach to improving
wellbeing. Strong opportunity to use RCTs
to test their impact.
 Integrate wellbeing into existing CSL
curriculum for leadership development.
Resilience training
 EAP providers could potentially offer
resilience training as part of their offer or as
an additional cost.
 95% of Civil Service to be covered by new
EAP/OH framework by the end of 2013,
and providers have to demonstrate they are
supporting staff wellbeing.
 Evidence from UKBA suggests resilience
training may be popular.
Stress training and specific support for
staff networks
 A range of learning modules on stress
already exist on Civil Service Learning
 Explicit support to specific staff networks to
help them improve their members’
Civil Service People Survey 2012: Wellbeing
Line management competency frameworks
and development
 Integrating external wellbeing
competencies into existing Civil Service
frameworks and training for line managers.
Bespoke health and wellbeing plans and
team building initiatives
 IT packages exist that give staff access to
individual health and wellbeing
assessments, from which personalised
plans can be developed.
 Wellbeing and engagement are influenced
by the relationships between team
members, particularly levels of trust.
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There is a wealth of
useful online
wellbeing resources,
for both employees
and organisations
The NHS provides a self-assessment wellbeing tool, which can be used by individual
 NHS wellbeing self-assessment tool: http://www.nhs.uk/Tools/Pages/Wellbeing-selfassessment.aspx
Organisations will find resources from nef, HSE and DWP useful:
 Aked, J., Marks, N., Cordon, C. and Thompson, S. (2008), Five Ways to Well-being: The
Evidence, New Economics Foundation (nef):
 HSE Line Manager Competency Indicator Tool:
 DWP fit note: http://www.dwp.gov.uk/fitnote/
Tools for developing a business case for wellbeing are available from DWP and NICE:
 DWP workplace wellbeing tool: http://www.dwp.gov.uk/health-work-and-well-being/ourwork/workplace-well-being-tool/
 NICE tools and resources on promoting mental wellbeing at work, including business
case, costing template, and slide set: http://guidance.nice.org.uk/PH22
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