Why did we create the Hub and what are the aims of the Hub?

We have worked together at Affinity Health at Work for the last ten years, and over that time have developed a wealth of materials, tools and guidance aimed at making a tangible difference in the way workplaces function – to humanise the workplace.  At Affinity all our outputs are freely accessible in the hope that they can be disseminated as widely as possible – and in so doing make the most difference to employee health, wellbeing and engagement.


For the last few years, we have taken an evidence-based practice approach/methodology to our research and practice. This is where we take evidence from a number of different sources – from academic literature, practitioner literature, the local context and expert stakeholders and practitioners – and combine all this to come to a rounded solution for the workplace. We really believe that using this methodology enables the most enlightened work and evidence.  We however recognise that working in both academia and practice we are in a privileged position in terms of our access to evidence – unlike many in our industry.


We want to enable everyone – both academics and practitioners – free access to as wide a range of evidence as possible. To do this, we have established a practitioner-focused resource that gives access to evidence-based materials, information, guidance and tools aimed at enhancing employee health, wellbeing and engagement.


Specifically we aim to:

  • Bring together literature and practice in the field
  • Enable practitioners (and academics) to access current literature and tools in the field in a concise and easy way
  • Provide an accessible and rigorous alternative to academic journals
  • Create a forum for publishing rigorous evidence-based practitioner literature


The Hub includes materials on a range of health, wellbeing and engagement topics. We will build the number of topics over time. For each topic the materials included will be organised into three categories:

  1. Evidence
  2. Tools and Guidance
  3. National Policy Implications and White Papers

Who will use the Hub?

  • Practitioners (both internal/in-house practitioners and external consultants/ suppliers) who want a one-stop shop to access the latest rigorous, evidence-based health, well-being and engagement literature and tools
  • Organisations who want to quality-check both the tools available, and/or the suppliers of health, well-being and engagement services
  • Suppliers/practitioners who would like to gain a stamp of credibility for their research and tools. For more information see Add Evidence or Tools
  • Academics who want to ensure that their work is relevant, to identify gaps/opportunities in research and readily access evidence-based practitioner research and tools. For more information on this.
  • Students looking to access literature reviews on a wide range of health, wellbeing and engagement tools
  • Universities aiming to better enable academics to understand and deliver impact in their work and potentially in the future contribute to the Research Excellence Framework (REF). For more information on this

Where does the hub fit within the field of health, wellbeing and engagement?

This table outlines the key stakeholders with an interest in the health, wellbeing and engagement field in the UK, their focus and how the Hub provides a distinct offering to each. It also highlights existing Affinity Health at Work affiliations within this network.


Stakeholder organisation

Nature of the organisation

Focus of this organisation

AHAW online hub distinct offering

Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)

Membership body for HR and development professionals

Provide voice, set standards, develop, connect and support members with resources, guidance, events and training

CIPD provides guidance for practitioners on the breadth of HR and development issues vs AHAW hub focuses on workplace health and wellbeing and on providing guidance and tools – collaboration will be valuable

Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH)

Membership body for health and safety professionals

Set standards and support, develop and connect members with resources, guidance, events and training

IOSH provides guidance for practitioners on the breadth of health and safety issues vs AHAW hub focuses on workplace health and wellbeing guidance – collaboration will be valuable

Health and Safety Executive (HSE)

Executive non-departmental public body, sponsored by DWP

Prevention and reduction of work-related ill-health and injury

HSE is a regulator that provides some guidance vs AHAW hub provides evidence-based guidance that can support HSE’s mental health/stress agenda – collaboration will be valuable


Executive non-departmental public body, sponsored by BIS

Provide information, advice, training, conciliation and other services for employers and employees to help prevent or resolve workplace problems

Acas provides guidance on good practice at work and thought leadership as well as conciliation services vs AHAW hub focuses on workplace health and wellbeing guidance – collaboration will be valuable


Executive non-departmental public body, sponsored by Dept of Health

Provides national guidance and advice to improve health and social care

NICE provides standards and guidance including some on mental health at work and management practices vs AHAW hub focuses on workplace health and wellbeing guidance – providing links to NICE guidance will be valuable

Public Health England (PHE)

Executive agency sponsored by the Dept of Health

Protect and improve the nation’s health and wellbeing and reduce health inequalities

PHE focuses on public health and health promotion nation-wide including providing healthy workplace charter frameworks vs AHAW hub focuses on workplaces and all links between work and health – liaison will be valuable

Investors in People (IIP)

Part of the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (publicly funded body)

Sets standard for people management providing assessment framework

IIP focus is on providing a model and evaluation framework and publications are paid-for vs AHAW hub focuses on health wellbeing and provides free-to-access guidance – reference to and coherence with the IIP health and wellbeing framework will be valuable

Work Foundation (WF)

Think tank

Change people’s experience of work and the labour market through research and influencing public policy and organisational practices

WF focuses more at the policy-maker level and draws some conclusions for employer organisations and practitioners vs AHAW hub focuses at organisational/practitioner level and draws some conclusions for policy – collaboration will be valuable

Business in the Community Wellbeing at Work Campaign (BITC)

Coalition of businesses committed to improving understanding of workplace wellness

Provide advice and services to members

BITC focuses on providing services and support to its members vs AHAW hub aims to provide free-to-access advice to all interested practitioners and organisations

New Economics Foundation (NEF)

Think tank

Promote social, economic and environmental justice through research and campaigns

NEF focuses on health economics nation-wide vs AHAW hub focuses on the workplace with a more organisational/ practitioner slant – reference to nef wellbeing research will be valuable

What Works Centre for Wellbeing (WWCW)

Government/research council funded centre – Community Interest Company

Build understanding what national and local governments, along with voluntary and business partners, can do to increase wellbeing

WWC focuses on systematic reviews (which will favour academic research) and does not yet have a dissemination mechanism vs AHAW hub will take a broader approach to evidence to include both practitioner and academic research and might provide a dissemination tool for WWC – collaboration will be valuable

Robertson Cooper Ltd (RCL)

Commercial provider founded by Cary Cooper and Ivan Robertson originally as a spin-off from UMIST

Help organisations measure, build and maintain psychological wellbeing in the workplace

RCL focuses more on paid-for measurement services, though they do provide the free tool iResilience vs AHAW hub focuses on providing free-to-access – collaboration with RCL and links to its free resources will be valuable

Universities (Uni)

Academic institutions

Conduct research and teach students

Universities focus on academic research and publishing in peer-reviewed journals vs AHAW hub will include academic and practitioner research and provide practical tools and guidance – collaboration with a wide range of universities will be valuable


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