WHISPAs Network

Workplace health and wellbeing initiatives that are free at the point of use to workplaces

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NIHR Funder logo and funder statement


WHISPAs provide information, advice, activities, and/or accreditation about workplace health and wellbeing, such as guidance on policies about flexible working and caring responsibilities, mental health support, and fitness classes. They are free at the point of use for workplaces, usually because they are funded by local government or voluntary and community organisations. Free at the point of use means that participating workplaces do not need to pay anything to take part. Examples include the Better Health at Work Award in the North East and Cumbria, Thrive at Work in the West Midlands, and Healthy Cornwall workplace health. If you are involved in a WHISPA, please get in touch with us – we want to hear from you.



University of Birmingham (200 x 200 px)
Newcastle University 200 x 200
Teesside University 200 x 200
Imperial College London 200 x 200
University of Hertfordshire 200 x 200
Warwick University 200 x 200
University of Exeter  Logo v2 (200 x 200 px)


Working and workplaces directly impact people’s health and wellbeing and affect inequalities. People in full time employment are underserved in research. In our research, we aim to:

(1) Build a strong national collaboration on the wide range of publicly funded initiatives that workplaces can access for free
(2) Overcome barriers to meaningful public involvement in workplace research among people in full time employment
(3) Provide high quality evidence on the effectiveness of WHISPAs and how they can be implemented nationally

The overall aim of this research is to develop a new national collaboration of WHISPA providers, workplaces, researchers, and stakeholders. Its main purpose is to share knowledge leading to the delivery of impactful solutions for health and wellbeing promotion and primary prevention through WHISPAs. A cross-cutting theme is addressing inequalities through WHISPAs.

Research Questions

  1. What are the characteristics of current WHISPA charters and accreditation schemes?
  2. What is the perceived impact of a new national network of WHISPA providers and workplaces on knowledge mobilisation?
  3. What aspects of diversity should be considered in workplace health and wellbeing research?
  4. What are the barriers and facilitators to public involvement and engagement in workplace research among diverse employers, employees, and organisations?
  5. Is it feasible to conduct randomised controlled trials with a national network of WHISPAs?

We are growing our group of public contributors with lived experience of being in full time employment. Please contact whispa@contacts.bham.ac.uk to find out more.