New Alliance book: Building a Resilient Workforce in the Early Years

The Early Years Alliance will publish a new book providing childcare professionals with practical tools for a proactive approach in building team resilience and improving mental health and wellbeing in the workforce.

Building a Resilient Workforce in the Early Years follows Minds Matter, a path-breaking report from the Alliance last year which laid bare the extent of workplace stress and mental health issues in the sector.

The book’s publication also coincides with the launch of Ofsted’s new Education Inspection Framework which expects leaders to “engage with their staff and [be] aware and take account of the main pressures on them.”

This new publication recognises the common causes of low mental wellbeing in the sector, such as workload and inadequate funding. It looks at the impact of work-related stress not only on the performance and well-being of practitioners and providers, but also on the wellbeing of those around them, including the children in their care.

Building a Resilient Workforce in the Early Years demonstrates how to build team resilience and a culture of support to tackle low mental health and wellbeing. It is full of advice on improving workplace practice and providing support to colleagues to ensure a proactive approach.

Included with the publication is a template mental health and wellbeing policy and other useful practical tools, such as a motivation quiz and employee wellbeing survey.

A special 20% discount is available for purchases from the Alliance’s online shop made by 30 June.

Author Helen Garnett, said:

“Improving practitioners’ mental health will only be achieved through collaborative approaches. It is essential for early years providers and practitioners alike to take steps to help prevent low mental health and wellbeing of colleagues due to work related stress, and also to support and comfort anyone who is affected by mental health issues. Early years providers have the chance to place wellbeing at the heart of their practice, recognising that the needs of the practitioner are of significance importance to children’s development.”

Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Earl Years Alliance, said:

“The results of our Minds Matter survey were a wake-up call for many of us. We expected to see the strain of trying to keep a childcare setting sustainable and of managing ever increasing workloads in the results – but no one could have anticipated the sheer scale of stress and other mental health issues in the sector. It was far and away our most responded-to survey and the findings were as striking as they were upsetting.

“It was clear we had a duty to do something. In the weeks following the report we contacted Ofsted and the DfE to set up the Early Years Workload advisory group, which will report back with its findings and concrete action points this summer. And now we have published this excellent book aimed at empowering professionals in our sector with the tools they need to manage workplace stress and build their resilience. This is not ‘job done’ by any means but it’s an important step in creating a happier and healthier sector and I’m pleased that the Alliance is able to be part of that." 

Building a Resilient Workforce in the Early Years is available for Alliance members: £13.65 and to non-members for £19.50


How to order:


About the Alliance

  • The Early Years Alliance is the largest and most representative early years membership organisation in England. A registered educational charity, it also provides high-quality affordable childcare and education to support children and families in areas of deprivation throughout the country.
  • The Alliance represents 14,000 member settings and supports them to deliver care and learning to more than 800,000 families every year. We deliver family learning projects, offer information and advice, produce specialist publications, run acclaimed training programmes and campaign to influence early years policy and practice.

The Alliance website is