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Fair Work resources for employers

This guide offers a range of useful resources that will help you to better understand Fair Work and implement it at your organisation.

Introduction to Fair Work

When we talk about Fair Work, we are referring to all aspects of working for your organisation, from creating a job spec, to the daytoday experience of working and progressing in your organisation, to developing a positive organisational culture.

Fair Work as a priority area

Fair Work is one of the priority areas in the Strategy for Scotland’s museums and galleries. We strive to support the sector in implementing Fair Work practices and lead by example by implementing these practices into our own organisation.


Scotland’s museums and galleries are attractive employers which offer positive working life experiences. They are places where Fair Work drives success, wellbeing, and prosperity for individuals, organisations, and society.

Sector actions:
  • Invest in development opportunities for all staff and volunteers.
  • Implement fair and progressive practices across all areas of work including recruitment, pay, and contracts.
  • Pay the real living wage and only use zero-hours contracts in appropriate ways.
MGS actions:
  • Support delivery of fair work practices by sharing access to relevant toolkits and resources.
  • Continue to encourage good recruitment practices by promoting Fair Work approved jobs on the MGS website and advocating for the Fair Work First policy.
  • Ensure that organisations which receive MGS grant funding meet good fair work practices. We will do this by requiring all applicants to complete an Employer Declaration annually which will assess compliance with certain aspects of Fair Work.

Scottish Government's Fair Work Framework

Fair Work is central to achieving the Scottish Government’s priority for sustainable and inclusive growth, and as we transition out of the COVID-19 pandemic and into a period of economic recovery and renewal, Fair Work is more important than ever and must be at the heart of employment practices, funding, and procurement. To help employers achieve this, they have created a useful framework, focusing on the 5 dimensions of Fair Work: Effective voice, Security, Opportunity, Fulfilment, and Respect.

Effective voice  

Having the opportunity to contribute your ideas, be listened to, and be able to make a difference. 

You might want to think about: 

  • Open communication and feedback channels
  • Staff surveys 
  • Feeling listened to  
  • Psychological safety 

Find out more about Effective Voice and how MGS are putting it into practice. 

CIPD – The future of employee voice

Engage For Success – The employee voice


Access to fair work, training, and progression for all. 

You might want to think about:

  • The Equality Act as a minimum baseline
  • What’s your approach to learning & development – formal and informal  
  • Accessibility – physical access applying for jobs, Diversity / Diversifying the workforce  
  • If you are considering a hybrid working approach for some or all staff, are you considering impacts on and opportunities to improve inclusion? See links below.

Find out more about Opportunity and how MGS are putting it into practice. 

APT – provides advice, support and training to businesses who require support on the hiring, retention, and support of disabled people.

CIPD – Guidance on inclusion in the workplace

 CC Skills – Best Practice Guide to Apprenticeships, Internships and Volunteering

South West Museums – How to write an effective freelance brief

South West Museums – How to commission freelancers in a fair, inclusive and transparent way

South West Museums – Commissioning and working with freelancers: Principles checklist


Job security, fair contracts, stable and predictable wages, predictability of working hours, paying at least the Real Living Wage.

You might want to think about: 


Opportunity to use your skills and take responsibility.  

You might want to think about:

  • Roles with clear responsibilities/objectives  
  • Development plans, opportunities to stretch 
  • How do you reward and recognise good work 
  • Understanding what motivates people 

CIPD – How to design an effective job 


Respectful relationships at all levels (health, dignity and wellbeing, your efforts, contribution and work life balance). 

  • Wellbeing
  • Flexible Working  

Robertson Cooper – Good day at work conversation 

Flexibility Works 

Further Resources

Scottish Enterprises – Fair Work Employer support Tool   Helps employers understand and fully embed the dimensions of Fair Work. It will support your organisation to take the next step on your Fair Work journey.

CAS (the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service)   Offers free, impartial advice on workplace rights, rules and best practice.

CIPD – Knowledge Hub and  CIPD – Good Work Index  Lots of resources including factsheets, guidance, and podcasts as well as more in-depth research and reports.

Engage for Success  promotes employee engagement as a better way to work that benefits individual employees, teams, and whole organisations

Propel HUB is a partnership resource providing practical resources to support the growth of better workplaces.

Diversifying The Workforce contains resources that look at anti-racist recruitment, training, and programmes for diversifying the museum and gallery workforce.



If you'd like to find out more about Fair Work and how to implement it into your organisation, please contact MGS Skills and Development Manager Markus Offer.

Contact Markus Offer