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Employee Wellbeing - are these just buzz words?

View profile for Debbie Sansome
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Something which is at the top of Eric Robinson’s agenda currently is our newly implemented Employee Wellbeing Programme, 'My Lifestyle'.

This kind of Programme is something, which I have been considering for a while and it is great I have been able to roll this out to all employees.

It is very often overlooked, or underestimated just how important wellbeing is and I think it is fair to say that it is not always at the top of employer’s agenda. Often productivity and high workloads take priority however, there would be no point in relying on productivity, or getting through high workloads, without looking after the wellbeing of employees who help you reach these.

In a world wherein the norm is long working days, additional working at home, pressures, targets and trying to manage home responsibilities, it is becoming even more important to ensure that your employees are happy and healthy. In return, an employer benefits from engaged and motivated employees, a good retention rate and a great degree of productivity.

As we spend a great deal of time at work, it is essential that we try and get the balance right.

I have been looking at ways in which we can invest more productively and effectively in employee wellbeing and My Lifestyle is managed over 4 pillars; to include Mental Wellbeing, Physical Wellbeing, Financial Wellbeing and Social Wellbeing.

The options marked with a * are part of our Wellbeing Bonus and employees can choose one of the options of a value up to £100, in addition to the rest of the initiatives.

If employees are an organisation’s most important assets, why would an organisation choose to ignore such an important factor of the employee relationship?

The reception we have received from employees has been overwhelming. This is what we have put in place to incorporate all 4 pillars;

1. Mental wellbeing

  • Training to recognise early signs of mental health issues in the workplace
  • Trained Ambassadors to be a person to go to
  • Signing the Employer Pledge, along with thousand of other employers, against discrimination and stigma associated with mental health issues
  • *Counselling / self-help sessions
  • *Reflexology, Massage, or Spa treatments
  • *Meditation or Tai Chi sessions

2. Physical wellbeing;

  • Personal and Fitness training and awareness sessions
  • Healthy living and healthy heart awareness sessions
  • Free Flu Jab
  • *Yoga sessions
  • *Fit Bit device
  • *Gym sessions

3. Financial wellbeing;

  • Financial and pension advice planning

4. Social wellbeing

  • Recognising Awareness Days
  • Flexible Working
  • Flexible breaks – opting to flex when break is needed

Organisations do not need to spend a lot of money in implementing an Employee Wellbeing Programme, there can be many ways in which to look after wellbeing and ensure a work / home life balance, such as;

  • Can you offer flexible working? Having different working hours can elongate your business hours and, therefore, has the consequence of offering an extended service to your customers / clients;
  • Lots of external organisations will be pleased to offer advice, guidance, or awareness sessions free of charge initially – have you looked into this?; and
  • Recognising awareness days, such as; Employee Appreciation Day, Mental Health Awareness Days and National Stress at Work week – a simple thank you, or cakes all round to recognise hard work;

The real question is can you afford not to invest?

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