How have you incorporated Wellbeing into your H&S system?

How have you incorporated Wellbeing into your H&S system?

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As ACS enters the 45th year of saving lives through Health, Safety & Wellbeing, ACS Founding Director, Emma Willey reflects on the changes that have gone before and what this year holds for Health, Safety and Wellbeing in the workplace. She writes: "The year that I started in Health and Safety was the same year that the Management of Health and Safety Regulations came out. These regulations introduced Risk Assessments as mandatory BEFORE ANY work was carried out. There was huge fanfare about the biggest change to H&S legislation since 1974 and all sensible H&S practitioners were applauding the fact that, once again, the U.K. was leading the world in Health and Safety in the workplace. That was in 1992. 30 years later and we are again facing enormous changes to the philosophy and tone of Health and Safety in the workplace".

The introduction of ‘Wellbeing’ as a topic to be covered by H&S legislation is by no means new. The term was first introduced by the World Health Organisation in 1948 in its definition of Health as ‘the complete health and well-being of a person, not just the absence of disease or infirmity’. Before the onslaught of Coronavirus, our HSE and more forward looking companies were already looking at other areas of employees health, not just physical health. Since the pandemic and all of the personal restrictions, lost liberties and severe impact of isolation on most of the world’s population, the term ‘Wellbeing’ is now being used in all walks of life. Workplaces, school playgrounds, all types of media, coffee shops, charity shops, doctors surgeries and beyond. 

Whilst most of us know (even if we don’t acknowledge or adhere to!) what is good for us personally, how does an employer navigate the ocean of possibilities when dealing with their workforce? How does the employer maintain ‘fairness’ and ‘equality’ amongst a workforce with a wide age range, different genders, different life stages, different career expectations, different health issues … pretty much a different ‘everything’ without being branded ‘nosey’ or ‘intrusive’.

The answer, as it almost always is in Health and Safety, is to have robust policies and procedures in place in the workplace. Everything that we do in health and safety is aimed at ensuring we look after our staff – ALL STAFF – and ensuring that they are safely able to carry out their duties. By embracing Wellbeing, H&S practitioners ensure their staff that by coming to work, their lives are enhanced in some way. Whether that’s better job satisfaction, career prospects, support to carry out the job, enhanced productivity… Every single one of these areas can be improved for the staff, and therefore for the employer and the organisation as a whole, by embracing wellbeing and putting proper policies and procedures into the existing Health and Safety system.

As we start a new year that we all know is going to be financially difficult, it really is worth spending some time on your organisations' wellbeing and seeing how health, safety and wellbeing can help you and your organisation to thrive in 2023, not just scrape by or exist.

Contact ACS today to learn more on 0141 427 5171 or email