Publish date: 25 August 2022

The NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) was made available to the NHS in April 2015. It was developed following sustained engagement and consultation with key stakeholders within NHS organisations across England and using expert advice on the factors that would provide measurable and meaningful indicators of equality performance on which organisations can develop and improve.

The NHS Workforce Disability Equality Standard (WDES) came into force on 1 April 2019 and is a set of specific measures (metrics) that enables NHS organisations to compare the experiences of disabled and non-disabled staff. This information is then used by organisations to develop a local action plan, and enable them to demonstrate progress against the indicators of disability equality.

The main purpose of the WRES is:

  • To help local, and national, NHS organisations (and other organisations providing NHS services) review their data against the nine WRES indicators.
  • To produce action plans to close the gaps in workplace experience between white and Black and Ethnic Minority (BAME) colleagues.
  • To improve BAME representation at the Board level of the organisation.

The main purpose of the WDES is:

It provides us with the second opportunity to compare year-on-year progress in the career and workplace experiences of NHS disabled staff. This report provides a summary of the 2021 national data analysis and presents key findings, recommendations for continued focus and actions by trusts. regions and the national Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team at NHS England and NHS Improvement.

The organisation has made improvements in all nine indicators of the WRES such as the following: -

  • There has been a 4 percentage point increase (improvement) in BAME representation at the senior level from 32% to 36%.
  • There has been a 0.37-point improvement in BAME staff being appointed from shortlisting compared to white staff and there is now parity between BAME and white staff.
  • There has been a 0.63-point reduction (improvement) in BAME staff entering the formal disciplinary process compared to last year, there is now parity between BAME and white staff.
  • There has been a 1.3 percentage point reduction (improvement) in staff experiencing discrimination at work from a Manager/team leader or other colleagues.
  • BAME Board membership improved by 1.2 percentage points to 20%.


The organisation has made improvements in indicators of the WDES such as the following: -

  • There has been a 0.21-point improvement in Non-disabled staff being appointed from shortlisting compared to Disabled staff.
  • Overall there is a 3.8 percentage point decrease (improvement) in the experience of disabled staff experiencing harassment, bullying or abuse.
  • There has been a 7.3 percentage point increase (improvement) in Disabled believing that the organisation provides equal opportunities for career progression or promotion

Nina Singh, Director of Workforce and Organisation Development, said: “We're really pleased with the improvements the Trust has been making over the last year across all indicators and a massive thank you to all the staff who have contributed to our progress. The data provides further confirmation that we're moving in the right direction and working towards becoming a more equal and diverse workforce. Our ambition is to move from making good progress to attaining some of the best outcomes. We still have some way to go to achieve this and are committed to working together with our staff to make further improvements.”

To view the latest Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES/WDES-2022) report please visit our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion page.