Local Employers Recognised for Helping Walsall Residents
The whole of Walsall benefits when businesses and organisations help their neighbours and local communities to prosper.
Social Value is an increasingly popular term used to describe the wide range of activities that companies do to support people and give back to their local areas. This activity can include engaging with schools to increase the aspiration of their students, targeting their recruitment on long-term unemployed or vulnerable people, investing in the local supply chain or helping charities and voluntary organisations to deliver their services.
Walsall Council values this commitment and since 2018 has been recognising socially-minded businesses and organisations through the Walsall Works Partner Awards.
Partners of Walsall Works have been able to demonstrate that they look beyond their own business and been involved in a wide range of activities that benefit local people, communities and the wider economy.
To help distinguish the level of involvement in delivering social value, there are three grades of award. Bronze Partners have been involved in recruiting locally through the Walsall Works programme while the Silver and Gold Partner statuses are quality standards for the delivering in each of the following areas:
- Creating and sustaining employment for local people
- Helping local people to increase their skills and improve their employability
- Creating more opportuntiies for local companies through supply chains
- Supporting Walsall’s most vulnerable residents to improvee their health and wellbeing
- Helping local schools to raise aspiration and improve educational attainment
- Supporting community-managed facilities and developing community-based initiatives
- Increasing diversity and inclusivity in the workplace
On 21 March, the first round of 2019 partners were announced at a ceremony at Walsall College Hub. This included a record number of new Gold Partners, with six local employers being able to demonstrate leadership in the delivery of social value. The Gold Partners were ZF Lemforder, Lovell Partnerships, whg, Walsall College, AF Blakemore and the Midcounties Co-operative.
Four new Silver Partners were also recognised and they were Kerry Collins Recruitment, GTG Training, Alchemy Architectural Aluminium Solutions and Keyboard Specialists. In addition to this, 20 new Bronze Partners were announced.
During the awards event, partners were able to hear about some of the activity of new Gold Partner, ZF Lemforder, who highlighted their school engagement and apprentice programme. Silver Partner, Alchemy provided a case study of how through positive recruitment, they employed a young ex-offender with a toubled past and watched him progress in the company and turn his life around.
These are just some examples of the difference that employers are making. Walsall Works aims to work together with it’s partners and all companies across the borough to share best practice for social value and continue to provide opportunities for Walsall residents to thrive.