The City of South Perth is a local government area in the inner southern suburbs of the Western Australian capital city of Perth, about 4 kilometres south of Perth’s Central Business District. Major attractions of the City include the Swan River, Sir James Mitchell Park, Perth Zoo, Royal Perth Golf Club, Collier Park Golf Course, as well as the Mends Street Precinct, Angelo Street Precinct, Preston Street Precinct and Waterford Shopping Complex.
Health and Wellbeing Profile
The City of South Perth Workplace Health and Wellbeing Program is coordinated by the City's Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Coordinator with the assistance of the Health and Wellbeing Committee.
"Whilst the City strives to achieve keeping employees safe at work, we also aim to send employees home in a better health and wellbeing state than when they arrived at work. By keeping employees engaged with the City via our health programs and additional wellbeing offerings, there is a proven reduction in absenteeism which in turn can reduce the impact on insurance and payroll. Our workers' compensation costs have significantly reduced whilst the program has been in place and this could definitely be attributed to greater engagement and positivity by staff as well as consistent preventative programs including warm-up for work, ergonomic assessments and tools," says the OHS Coordinator.
After securing funding from the Local Government Insurance Scheme to fund activities such as flu vaccinations and skin screening, the City’s OHS Coordinator undertook HWWA Coordinator Training and established a Health and Wellbeing Committee to plan for and oversee program activities. The City allocated resources to developing an action plan which is reviewed and updated annually. Staff are surveyed at the conclusion of each of the individual programs as well as annually to plan for future directions. Senior Management support has been instrumental in the success of the City's Health and Wellbeing Program.
"Our CEO is a strong supporter of the health and wellbeing program and participates regularly in the initiatives on offer. This has been instrumental in leadership group support and the ongoing success and popularity of the program," stated the OHS Coordinator.
"Having support from the CEO and Leadership Team has been fundamental in engaging employees in these programs, as well as increasing participation. Our health and wellbeing survey was invaluable in assessing the response to all of our existing programs and gaining insight into what our future program may offer."
Health and Wellbeing Achievements
The City of South Perth's workplace health and wellbeing program includes the following activities:
A dedicated Program Coordinator and Health and Wellbeing committee to plan and oversee activities
A comprehensive action plan outlining objectives, priority areas and key activities for the next 12 months
Bi-monthly lunch and learn seminars on a variety of health-related topics
Provision of healthy catering at all internal meetings and events
Sit-stand workstations and standing/walking meetings
A Travel Plan which encourages staff to actively commute to and from work. The City also provides fleet bikes and corporate Smart Rider cards to encourage staff to actively commute to off-site meetings
Individual health assessments including flu vaccinations and skin screening. Employees also have access to a a choice of two 10-week health and nutrition programs. These are run in conjunction with 8 week small group fitness challenges to maximise the benefit of the nutrition programs.
An online health portal featuring information about modifiable lifestyle risk factors, such as smoking, nutrition, alcohol and physical activity
Participation in physical activity challenges and free exercise classes, including internal events such as 10,000 Steps Challenge and community events such as HBF Run for a Reason
Lunch time yoga and the provision of "healthy" prizes for staff who participate in program activities
"I found this program to have a positive impact on my health and wellbeing," says City of South Perth staff member, Health and Wellbeing Staff Survey (February 2019).
Three top tips from the City of South Perth:
Appoint a dedicated program coordinator
Ensure that members or senior management are consulted, engaged and take part in initiatives on offer alongside staff
Implement a coherent action plan which is adequately budgeted for and guided by staff consultation
Investing in the health and wellbeing of our employees is one of the highest priorities in the City’s workforce planning. Here at the City we aim to create a rich work environment that connects physical, psychological and social health which are the proven elements of a resilient, focused workforce less susceptible to illness, stress and with fewer preventable health problems.