Many businesses are making changes
A recent poll suggests that 91% of employers are taking action when it comes to implementing employee wellbeing support strategies this year. Of those surveyed, 6% said it was something they were considering, while only 3% of respondents stated this was not something on their agenda.
Global technology firm Wise recently announced updated and enhanced leave policies for its 3000 staff. Enhanced leave policies are one way to help promote the feeling of being valued, while potentially increasing company loyalty and reducing staff turnover. And it isn’t just big private tech companies making changes.
Harborough District Council this month signed a Workplace Wellbeing Charter that reflects the needs of its 208 employees. Council leaders believe the charter will support staff with long-term health conditions, as well as promote a culture of workplace wellbeing.
A holistic approach is needed
A large part of wellbeing support for employees extends beyond benefits related to physical health. Comprehensive sick leave polices, private medical insurance and cash plans are effective ways to support staff with their physical wellbeing, but what about support for mental health?
The importance of a strategy that looks at employee wellness as a whole, not just from a physical aspect, should not be underestimated.
Although the taboo of mental health is slowly being broken down, there is still work to do. Recent research highlighted that over a third (35%) of British employers did not talk to their staff about mental health or wellbeing at all over the last year.
HR managers and business leaders should ensure any wellbeing solutions take a holistic and complete view and that measures are inclusive, so that all staff feel cared for and valued.
The cost of a lack of wellbeing support
Continuing to have a stigma around mental health in the workplace could be costly for employers. According to the charity Mind, 14% of employees have resigned and further 42% had considered resigning over workplace stress. Further to this, more than one in five (21%) have called in sick to avoid workplace stress, contributing to absenteeism costs.
On the other side of this, 56% of employers did state that they would like to do more to encourage staff wellbeing, but felt they lacked the right training or guidance.
Mental health absenteeism costs UK businesses a staggering £2.4 billion each year so it’s worth taking the time to implement strategies that will bolster the feeling of wellbeing for employees both in and outside of work.
As employers continue to look for innovative ways to attract and retain talent and ensure their workforce is happy and healthy, it’s clear that wellbeing support will likely continue to become ingrained in modern-day work culture.