East Sussex businesses committed to developing healthier and happier workforces were celebrated at a special event recently.

First annual conference

25 local businesses from across the county were presented with their Wellbeing at Work awards at the first annual Wellbeing at Work Conference and Awards event.

120 people from 59 different organisations joined Darrell Gale, Director of Public Health for East Sussex, for the event held in Eastbourne on Tuesday, February 28.

Wellbeing at Work Programme

Launched by the council in the autumn of 2021, the scheme works with employers to share resources and deliver training, as well as providing an accreditation scheme which supplies a framework to businesses, to help boost the health and wellbeing of employees.

The scheme offers two award categories with three award levels, Gold, Silver and Bronze, available:

  • Small Business Award (for organisations with 2 to 49 employees)
  • Business Award (for organisations with 50 or more employees)

Employers of any size can also sign up to an optional entry level award, the Wellbeing at Work Commitment.

Silver Award

Crowborough based manufacturer Servomex signed up to the awards shortly after they were launched and received their bronze award in June last year. The company recently achieved the Silver Wellbeing at Work Award and are now working towards the gold award.

Julie Burridge, Health and Wellbeing Manager at Servomex, said: “We take the health and wellbeing of our employees seriously at Servomex and therefore when the opportunity came up to participate in the Wellbeing at Work Awards we jumped at the chance.  These awards are a great way to showcase, promote and realise the work that has been achieved in terms of wellbeing but to also encourage and support further initiatives.

“We are proud to have now received the Silver Award to confirm the importance of wellbeing within our business and will now strive to achieve the gold.”

Small businesses recognised

Industrial Construction (Sussex) Ltd is the first construction company in East Sussex to be part of the Wellbeing at Work Scheme and were awarded the Small Business Bronze Award in January 2023.

The wellbeing initiatives the company adopted include regular on-site Toolbox Talks for staff and subcontractors on topics such as mental health and musculoskeletal health, and monthly Lunch & Learn sessions where staff come together to refresh their skills and talk about general wellbeing.

Chantalle Sullivan, Office & Supply Chain Co-ordinator and Wellbeing Champion from Industrial Construction (Sussex) Ltd, said: “ICS are very proud to be the first construction company in East Sussex to be part of the Wellbeing at Work scheme and to have received the Bronze Award at the start of this year.

“The health and wellbeing of our staff is very important to us and joining this scheme has given us the framework we needed to co-ordinate and grow our wellbeing initiatives, so we are best placed to support our employees.”

Bronze Awards

Eight local businesses were presented with Bronze Business Awards at the event including the St Leonards based children’s charity FSN.

Tracey Rose, FSN’s CEO, said: “FSN is proud to be awarded the Wellbeing at Work accreditation, enabling the charity to review the development of policies with staff and volunteers.

“As part of the process, FSN undertook a staff and volunteer survey to understand in depth the health and wellbeing of personnel and the publication of a monthly team newsletter now offers information on wellbeing tips and ideas.

“FSN is committed to continue the development of best practice to ensure all staff and volunteers are supported in the workplace.”

Introductory award

Community Supporters, an environmental education charity based in Rother, received a Wellbeing at Work Commitment Award after pledging to improve workplace health and wellbeing.

Lindsay White, founder and CEO of Community Supporters, said: “Community Supporters is a fairly new and local education charity and much of our work and projects involve supporting healthy body and mind, so it made complete sense to offer the same advice and support to our staff and volunteers.

“Taking part in this programme so far has enabled us to think more broadly about what good health is and what it means to each individual. We’ve been able to look at areas affecting a person’s health which we haven’t thought to look at before, meaning we are better placed to offer support not only to our workforce but also the wider public.”

Congratulations to all the award winners!

Sign up

To achieve awards, companies must complete a set of criteria that introduce policies and initiatives which focus on embedding practices that promote and support employee health and wellbeing.

The programme is open to any business, from any industry, that employs one or more person.

More information about the programme can be found on the Wellbeing at Work website.