How NHS Black Country ICB uses Bippit to boost inclusivity

The NHS Black Country ICB is responsible for meeting the health needs of 1.2 million people in the Black Country where it manages the NHS budget and provision of health services. It has become the latest organisation to invest in the financial wellbeing of its team by giving each employee access to Bippit. We spoke to their Chief People Officer, Shajeda Ahmed, about our new partnership.

To work well, you have to be well

One of NHS Black Country ICB’s key priorities is to look after their people, especially when it comes to their safety, health and wellbeing – both physical and psychological. The organisation knows that people work best when they’re healthy, and that’s why they have a range of initiatives available to support staff wellbeing.

One such initiative is the Black Country Staff Mental Health and Wellbeing Hub which was created during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Hub is a place for the organisation to look after its people, stay connected with everyone, and keep the conversation going about how everyone is feeling.

“We are committed to improving the health and wellbeing provision for our colleagues, and to responding to the changing needs of our people in terms of accessing support,” explains Shajeda. “We know that we need to support our people to be well to care well.”

“As a health and care system, health and wellbeing underpins all we do. It enables operational delivery, best patient care, and promotes us as the best place to work.”

Responding to the Covid-19 pandemic

Following the pandemic, the NHS Black Country ICB recognised that to help their people deliver excellent care, they also needed to ensure that colleagues felt supported and heard.

“Through listening to our colleagues, it has been a challenging time for many due to the rising cost of utilities and inflation,” Shajeda explains. “We also know that our local community may have been hit harder, recognising the wider health inequalities that exist and the consequences of economic hardship and longer term impact.”

“Looking after the health and wellbeing of our staff is a key priority, and this also includes their financial wellbeing. Money worries can affect anyone, and that stress can have a big impact on your health.”

“It’s an area of our lives which is very sensitive and private, making it hard to know where to turn for support and guidance. As a supportive and inclusive employer, we wanted to provide an offer that allows colleagues to explore how they can improve their financial wellbeing.”

This is what led the organisation to Bippit.

A personalised approach to financial wellbeing

Bippit’s platform now gives over 500 Black Country ICB employees access to expert financial coaches who have FCA-recognised qualifications. Each coach is matched to an employee’s individual needs and is available to provide personalised guidance. It’s this tailored approach that appealed to the organisation.

“The service that Bippit offers is aligned to the values that we hold as an ICB. It’s important that our workforce feels empowered to seek help and support if they need it, and Bippit’s blend of interventions and 1:1 support will result in our colleagues accessing a provision that meets their needs and circumstances.”

“We really liked Bippit’s ease of access for staff and the ability to pick and mix the support offers available. Accessing the service is easy and engaging – meaning colleagues are able to interact with it at a time that’s convenient to them.”

Demonstrating inclusivity and care

Staff at NHS Black Country ICB can access a wide range of benefits, and the organisation is always working to make sure that people are aware of what is on offer.

“We have a dedicated section of our staff intranet page that details all the health, wellbeing and financial benefits that are available, and we make sure that is regularly updated and communicated to all staff. We also use our regular communication tools such as our team brief, staff networks and email newsletters to remind them to check for any updates.”

“We want our colleagues to feel supported and have a sense of belonging. Responding as an employer to challenges they may experience, such as financial, is our way of demonstrating we lead inclusively and compassionately.”

Ready to see how Bippit’s financial wellbeing approach can boost inclusivity?