Did you know? “One in four Australian workers (25%) would sacrifice company perks for better wellbeing in their workplace and one in five workers would sacrifice a promotion (21%) or a pay rise (19%). Stressed workers would more readily sacrifice company perks (28%) and a pay rise (27%) for better wellbeing in their workplace” (McMillan, 2017 Workplace Wellbeing).
Implementing a workforce wellbeing program can be one of the levers organisations can pull to help their teams thrive. See below some suggested actions organisations can take in order to help improve wellbeing of their workforce.
Offer Health and Wellness Benefits
Providing resources for employees to engage in health and wellness activities is a common way of supporting employee wellbeing.
This may be in the form of onsite workout facilities (Google, Hootsuite, Adidas), gym discounts, team fitness activities (e.g., step challenges, team games, sports days), or just encouraged scheduling of regular fitness time in the calendar.
To address mental wellbeing, several companies such as Yahoo, Google, Nike, Pearson, and Salesforce offer onsite meditation rooms for their employees to rejuvenate their mind and body (MarketWatch, 2018). Providing access to, or encouraging use of, apps like Insight Timer, Headspace and Smiling Mind are another way to offer these services remotely.
Setting Priorities and Boundaries
One of the most common factors impacting wellbeing is workplace burnout. This can be prevented by setting realistic goals for your employees, helping to provide time management tools and training, helping employees set healthy work-life boundaries and respecting these boundaries. Being clear on priorities and setting realistic deadlines are also key.
These things are easier said than done, but as burnout continues to rise after a challenging 2020, Managers and employees alike would benefit from new tools to maintain energy in the workplace.
Addressing employee engagement
Studies reveal that highly engaged teams tend to be 21% more profitable than non-engaged teams (Forbes, 2019).
Understanding the level of engagement and the factors causing these levels is just the start; being able to create and implement plans that address underlining issues of engagement is crucial to engendering positive change.
Learning and Development
From financial education to physical and mental health education, employers can provide individuals access to training that improves their personal wellbeing as well as their professional wellbeing.
Access to Professional Support
Many companies offer employee support programs to provide critical professional services in times of difficulty. Whilst very important in a time of crisis, these services can also be beneficial for everyday mental health. To improve uptake of these services, organisations would benefit from reinforcing anonymity and suggesting commonplace uses to remove any barriers and stigma from utilising these services.
Managing your employees remotely can mean employees may sense a feeling of isolation or disconnection. This should be considered in a change communication and engagement plan – being sure that both formal communication forums (such as Town Halls, team off-sites) and informal social interactions (e.g., social events) allow for authentic social connection. Games such as fun questions, guessing games, and personality quizzes can help provide icebreakers that break monotony and promote camaraderie among employers.
Breaks. Time off. Annual Leave. These are all important factors supporting health and wellbeing. One of the easiest things organisations can do to support overall wellbeing is to provide the time for employees to reenergise and renew.
Whilst there are no quick fixes or silver bullets to address wellbeing in the workplace, the list above provides a few examples of what organisations can do to address employee wellbeing. Managers must set an example, to provide the permission for others to do the same. And we all must take action to ensure wellbeing strategies and programs come off the shelf and become part of our everyday lives.
Collagis is committed to helping businesses like yours to optimise workforce and organisational effectiveness.
We'd love to share with you how we can help you address workplace wellbeing in your workplace.
Links to references
Forbes. (2019, January 16). 10 Timely Statistics About The Connection Between Employee Engagement And Wellness.
Forbes. (2020, July 13). Amazon Stock Is At An All-Time High, But Will It Grow Any More? https://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2020/07/13/amazon-stock-is-at-an-all-time-high-but-will-it-grow-any-more/#4732eacc59ef
MarketWatch. (2018, October 26). Meditation rooms are the hottest new work perk.