West Dunbartonshire Council is committed to advancing the Fair Work Criteria, specifically:

1. Appropriate channels for effective employee voice

  • We recognise the signatory Trade Unions, UNITE, UNISON, GMB, EIS and SSTA, representing all occupational groups for the purpose of collective bargaining
  • We engage with the recognised unions in a variety of forums ranging from team and section to service (JCC) and organisation-wide collective with Elected Members (JCF) as well as dedicated monthly Convenor and Senior Officer engagement (Engagement Framework)
  • We are committed to working jointly with trade union partners to resolve issues and disputes in a timely manner
  • We provide facility time to Trade Unions and engage in early resolution focused, constructive dialogue with employees and their representatives to address workplace issues and disputes (Trade Union Recognition and Facilities Agreement)
  • Employees are advised of the recognised trade unions, and actively encouraged to join, both explicit in the joining information and induction
  • Employees are offered support through contact with their manager, the employee well-being supports and our Wellbeing and Mental Health trained Champions (Supporting Employee Wellbeing Policy)
  • We promote a zero-tolerance approach to bullying, discrimination, victimisation and harassment (Respect at Work Policy)
  • We use our online engagement platform (Trickle) to assess mood, motivation and gather views from the workforce. These in turn inform strategic and operational priorities and policy development

2. Investment in workforce development

  • Our ‘People First’ Strategy links to the Strategic Plan and focuses on outcomes linked to people being at the heart of the organisation and delivery of services (People First Strategy)
  • We have clear organisational values, set out in the ‘ACHIEVE’ framework, and strongly supported by our Trade Union colleagues
  • We provide informal and formal learning opportunities for employees at all levels, and all have access to our i-learn platform
  • We have robust service and organisational workforce and succession planning (Delivery Plans and Workforce Planning Strategy)
  • We actively support modern apprentices in the workplace, most recently reviewing remuneration levels in line with NMW and rLW (linked to succession planning) and support others with vocational qualifications (Sponsorship Policy)
  • We have an innovative ‘Be the Best Conversation’ initiative that seeks to deliver valuable time between employee and manager, on a regular basis, to check on wellbeing, discuss work activities and explore individual development needs

3. No inappropriate use of zero hours contracts

  • We operate both ‘casual’ and ‘supply’ registers to support statutory services and to ensure minimum resource levels are maintained work. There is no obligation to offer or accept work
  • We regularly review both casual and supply worker usage to ensure only used per policy and if used for longer term appointments, appropriate contracts are offered

4. Action to tackle the gender pay gap and create more diversity and inclusivity in the workplace

  • We have a Policy Statement on Equal Pay, conduct tri-annual audits and a Policy on Equality and Diversity in Employment/Respect at Work which sets out our commitment to eliminate discrimination, victimisation, harassment and bullying, advance equality of opportunity and promote acceptance
  • The Council is committed to working with trade union partners to advance equal pay, equal opportunity and inclusion
  • We have a Gender Based Violence Policy aligned to the Scottish Government’s Equally Safe at Work programme to prevent and eradicate violence against women and girls
  • We publish our Equality and Diversity Framework and Equality and Mainstreaming Outcomes on our website and via publicly accessible committees
  • We gather data to understand our workforce diversity and pay gap information, and our outcomes seek to address perceived barriers to employment with the council, these are also published
  • We have internal policies to tackle barriers to work including policies/guidance on menopause, loss, employee well-being (mental, physical, financial) and flexible working is fully embedded and widely utilised
  • We make reasonable adjustments for employees with a disability or impairment that is likely to affect their ability to carry out their role
  • We have signed up to the Race at Work Charter
  • We are a Disability Confident Employer


5. Committed to paying the Real Living Wage

  • We are working towards accreditation as a real Living Wage employer for eligible groups (circa June 2024)
  • Modern Apprentices, while exempt, are paid the NMW in year 1 and the SLGLW from year 2


6. Offer flexible and family friendly working practices


  • Our flexible working offerings are available from pre-employment stage with candidates able to request this consideration from the point of application
  • We have a wide range of family friendly policies and provisions including maternity, paternity, adoption, parental and bereavement leave
  • We have sensitive supports for pregnancy loss, working carers and menopause
  • We support employees to undertake reservist duties and hold the Defence Gold Award.
  • We support a range of flexible working practices from part time, term time, to remote and hybrid working

7. Opposition to the use of fire and rehire practice

  • We only consider effecting change where there is a legitimate business need and strive to achieve change through agreement wherever possible
  • We are committed to working with our Trade Union partners to deliver effective consultation and, where required, negotiating change(s)

The Fair Work First criteria are referenced in our procurement contracts to encourage third party providers to adopt positive fair work practices. This is weighted into the tender evaluation process and is subject to monitoring through contract management/service level agreements.