Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council (RMBC) had high level of employee absence from sickness. In 2006, RMBC had 11.3 days per employee of sickness leave which cost £ 1057 per employee is higher than the national average of 7.4 days and £ 692.

RMBC applied for funding from Sport England and introduced 2 years pilot “ Active Workforce Project” to improve health and activities level of its workforce. The project included various activities such as:

  • Free health checks (blood pressure, cholesterol, body fat %, BMI etc)
  • Inter-department sports tournament
  • Free back care
  • Free weight management course
  • Discounted gym membership
  • Lunchtime and after work fitness classes

Further extension of the project by another 3 years was made with additional funding. The impact at the end of the 5-year project was a reduction in employee sickness to 9.4 days per employee, at the cost of  £ 879. Even though the figures are still above the national average, there is a 16.8% reduction.

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