Social Value

Social Value

The Commercial Team is committed to achieving social value within all our work.

Social Value is more than just “best intentions”. It's about creating a clear, realistic plan that achieves tangible results. Success is not just about, statements and climate change alone. It’s about embedding these themes throughout the Council from how we invest in our County to encouraging sustainable innovations and delivery by both the Council and our supply network.

It is about getting our teams to work together on an approach towards shared goals. These goals can of course be revisited, re-directed and re-communicated as and when there is substantial policy or people change.

Social Value

Social Value Act 2012

Read more about the Social Value Act 2012.

What is the Commercial Team approach to Social Value in Worcestershire?

Social value is the contract view beyond service delivery and price that looks at the additional “social value” organisations can bring to our communities, businesses, VCSE’s and the locality. We want to work with our supplier network to deliver greater benefits for Worcestershire.

There is an increasing desire to buy from VCSE's and this desire is being driven by organisational Social Value approaches, a generational shift in expectations along with the direction of travel of government led initiatives such as Procurement policy notes 06/20 and 11/20, the industrial and civil society strategies and the Social Value Act.

Social value is not just one thing and can come in many forms. For example, as part of their offer to the Council an organisation could:

  • use of local VCSE’s (Voluntary organisations, Charities and Social Enterprises)
  • support local employment
  • create employment opportunities for care leavers
  • introduce apprenticeships
  • create work experience and volunteering opportunities
  • give career advice to school leavers via visits to schools or the long term unemployed
  • donate time, equipment or money to local community schemes
  • organise workshops for new business start ups
  • reduce the use of plastic
  • Enhance the environment
  • Recycle, re-use and upcycle

Our social value priorities

These include:

  • employment opportunities for care leavers
  • local employment focussing on Worcestershire
  • support and usage of local VCSE’s and SME’s
  • the environment

The Commercial Team support social value in the following ways:

  • we are Social Value supporters - If you are a VCSE that wants to be introduced into our supply chain we will lower the barriers of entry into our supply chain where possible
  • the Commercial Team attend the Public Sector Regional Social Value Task Force
  • the Commercial Team also meet with the Commercial and Procurement teams across the Borough’s and Districts
  • if there are any social value requirements that the wider business wants to achieve, we can include this, where appropriate, in tender exercises
  • we are working in partnership with Worcestershire County Cricket Club to deliver an ambitious programme of Social Value to be delivered across Worcestershire
  • we have so far facilitated the donation of a skill saw and some daylight lamps for local voluntary organisations
  • champion supporting educational establishments to engage with Employers within the Worcestershire economy to include work experience, careers fayres, careers days and talks

If you have a particular requirement that you would like support from our supply chain with, please fill out our contact form and select social value as the area.  

Tackling inequalities

  • we champion County Enterprises and are looking for future opportunities County Enterprises
  • we support the Care Leavers Covenant to give Care Leavers the best start in life and are looking to promote this with our supply chain for approaches to enhance care leavers opportunities about the CLC - Care Leaver Covenant
  • we are a 'Disability Confident Employer', which means we will guarantee an interview to any candidate with a disability who shows that they meet the essential criteria for the advertised role.
  • we have a lower MEAN gender pay gap than both private and public sector employers, and are committed to driving this lower
  • Worcestershire County Council has signed the Armed Forces Covenant pledging that operationally we will endeavour to uphold the key principles of the Armed Forces Covenant primarily:
    • supporting integration into civilian life and ensuring that veterans,
    • serving members and their families are not disadvantaged by their commitment to serving in the armed forces
  • we recognise the value serving personnel, reservists and military families bring to the authority and actively encourage our suppliers, and those we contract with, to do the same

Sign up to the Armed Forces Covenant here

Read more about Our Armed Forces Covenant

  • our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy sets out how we aim to tackle inequalities throughout our organisation

Read more on our Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion page


The Council has set a target to be carbon neutral by 2050 and is working in partnership to achieve the Worcestershire LEP Energy Strategy aim of halving the county’s carbon emissions by 2030.

The Council has a long history of action on climate change and is not acting alone – many organisations across the county, the UK and beyond are taking action too. 

The Council has cut its own absolute carbon emissions by 41% and reduced its net carbon emissions by 47% since 2009/10. Countywide carbon emissions have fallen by 42% since 2005.

The Council’s Net Zero Carbon plan is the latest and most ambitious in a series of carbon management plans implemented by the Council over the last 20 years.


The Commercial Team actively support this and in 2023 joined the Countryside Team to plant over 500 trees in the County supporting the wider Councils pledge to plant 150,000 trees. We are working with our current and future supply chains to actively support the provision of and the planting of trees.

The Local Government Association has further resources at: Climate change hub | Local Government Association.

Modern Slavery

Definition of Modern Slavery

The internationally accepted definition of human trafficking comes from The United Nation’s ‘Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children’ (2000). Commonly referred to as the ‘Palermo Protocol’. It states:

“Trafficking in persons” shall mean the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs.

The main legislation designed to tackle modern slavery is the Modern Slavery Act 2015 which was enacted in March 2015.

The Modern Slavery Act:

  • clarified existing modern slavery and human trafficking offences and increased the sentences for these offences
  • introduced slavery and trafficking prevention orders and slavery and trafficking risk orders – which can be used to disrupt activities by modern slavery offenders
  • created the new role of the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner
  • introduced support and protection for victims including a defence for victims of slavery or trafficking who commit an offence and introduced the role of Independent Child Trafficking Guardians
  • introduced a requirement for certain businesses to produce and publish a modern slavery statement on what they are doing to tackle modern slavery and trafficking in their supply chains.
  • Section 54 of the Act obliges business with a turnover above £36 million per annum to have transparency in their supply chain.
  • Worcestershire County Council’s Modern Slavery Transparency Statement can be found here 

Additional resources

Our Social Value Toolkit 

Our Social Value Toolkit will give you a understanding of what you may offer as part of your bid, business ESG approach, or current contract with Worcestershire County Council.  

The Social Value Toolkit

Support County Enterprises

We are currently supporting an initiative to invest in County Enterprises. Also known as Flue Pipes Direct, they offer meaningful and supported employment for people with learning and physical disabilities and any offers of work or help would be greatly appreciated.

County Enterprises

Sign up to the Care Leavers Covenant

The Care Leavers Covenant is a national inclusion programme that supports care leavers aged 16 to 25 to live independently. We encourage all our suppliers to sign up to the Care Leavers Covenant to support care leavers both within and outside of Worcestershire

Sign up to the Care Leavers Covenant here

Sign up to the Armed Forces Covenant

We all respect the services and sacrifice our Armed Forces provide for us and our proud to have achieved an Employer Recognition Scheme Silver Award supporting veterans, serving members and their families are not disadvantaged or discriminated against. 

Sign up to the Armed Forces Covenant here

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