Employee Wellbeing: What You Need to Know

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Employee Wellbeing: What You Need to Know

  • Publish Date: 7 months ago
  • Author:by Gary Burt

Employee wellbeing is becoming more and more prominent in all types of organisations. Here, we have answered some frequently asked questions which we hope will give you some more insight and information into launching and running your own company employee wellbeing programme.

Why invest in employee wellbeing?

Great people are at the heart of any business. We are seeing more companies with the right intent, but we need to see a sustained movement to recognise this as part of the overall business strategy and measure it. It's not about a ‘wellness week’ once a year where companies get some fruit and push forced participation or about having a weekly fruit box delivered that only gets shared among senior directors. Companies that don’t invest in this area will soon pay the price as more young people enter the workforce. Generate Z workers demand more than ever before and they have many non-negotiable expectations of an employer. And those companies who don’t offer what they need will be left behind.

What is the value of employeewellbeing?

The average person will spend approximately 90,000 hours of their life working. With all the pressures, stresses and strains that work brings, poor health and wellbeing are costing the UK economy up to £57 billion a year in lost productivity.  

A direct correlation is now seen between strong employee engagement and wellbeing and a company’s bottom line. Historically the success of any employee programme has been typically measured in ROI but as the sector and indeed businesses shift into an era of wellbeing, aspirations turn beyond monetary values and forward-thinking businesses look at introducing a whole new set of KPIs, also known as value on investment (VOI). VOI helps a business to understand how employee health and wellbeing can interact and affect business outcomes.

What’s the best employee wellbeing solution or programme?

It’s all about individualisation. Each human and therefore business is unique and health is a personal thing. So companies must allow for this. One top tip is to use technology as an enabler and use it to enhance something you know you already enjoy, which is health-related and compliments and encourages healthy behaviour. If a person enjoys exercising at the gym - try adding an on-demand virtual training session, for the times they can’t get to the gym on time or are travelling with work. If mindfulness and time out to reflect is important there are several great apps for this such as Headspace or Calm. But one clear takeaway is that wellness and health must be personal.

Employee wellbeing programmes must stem from a well-thought-out and measured strategy. We recommend you take the time to survey and question your teams before embarking on a new strategy and programme. After this, a programme can be formed. The programme must allow for personalisation both in and out of work and cover a broad spectrum of factors such as sleep, financial health and mental resilience. Gone are the days of simply offering a free gym membership to employees. A successful organisation will go on a journey with its teams, which will see education, information sharing, recognition and reward as part of the strategy.

How can you measure employee wellbeing?

There’s no ‘one size fits all’ output for an employee wellbeing programme. All businesses are different and as such have different challenges they need support with. Whilst one business will want to improve employee retention another will want to attract the best talent, and another will want to reduce absenteeism. The key thing you must do is be clear on your objectives at the start of this process. Survey and listen to the feedback from the employees and then deploy a programme that will appeal to their needs, wants, worries and aspirations. We recommend you audit quarterly and benchmark every 12 months.