Employee wellbeing has become an increasingly popular subject over the past number of years. Having a workforce who are healthy, productive and motivated can have a positive impact on the overall effectiveness of your business. When we talk about wellbeing we are not only referring to physical sickness, we are also looking at mental and social health.
When it comes to promoting workforce health it is important that employers take a proactive approach in an attempt to promote and maximise wellbeing.
The below are ways in which you can promote positive wellbeing:
1. Effective policies and procedures in place can contribute to a healthy workplace. It provides a framework for managing people issues such as communication, absences, grievances and occupational health.
2. Trained management has also been proven to have a positive impact on wellbeing. When managers have the appropriate training they communicate more effectively and are trained on how to manage difficult conversations. A manager with good people skills and appropriate training is more likely to tackle any issues that arise in the workplace. Early intervention can help resolve matters and prevent employees going on sick leave.
3. Managers can also promote an attendance culture. It has been proven that it’s better for an employee suffering from a mental illness to be at work. Social inclusion, structured routines and financial security all have a positive impact on an employee suffering from depression. Return to work meetings are also a useful tool. They are not only a good way of reducing the number of sporadic sick days an employee may have, they also give managers the opportunity to meet with employees following periods of absence and gives them the chance to establish if any reasonable accommodations need to be made for them.
4. Job flexibility can often play a part in wellbeing. Flexibility can be anything from allowing an employee to take their break whenever they want or allowing them to choose their own hours of work. Understandably depending on the business, job flexibility may not always be feasible, however, in situations where it isn’t, it’s important to communicate with staff. Where flexibility with working hours is not possible giving employees the autonomy to take ownership of how they fulfil their role is beneficial.Valued employees – it’s important that employees feel valued and respected. This can be done by as little as telling an employee they did a good job. A valued employee is more likely to be loyal and have job satisfaction which in turn reduces the number of sick days the individual will have and decreases the possibility of them leaving the business to seek alternative employment.
5. Many employers have put a focus on employee wellbeing due to the increase in the number of employees going on sick leave due to stress, work related stress and depression over the last number of years. While it is important to have the above measures in place in an attempt to avoid employees going on sick leave in some cases in it inevitable. It’s important to ensure procedures are in place to deal with absence due to stress and depression. Employee Assistance Programmes are good risk mitigation tools and can assist with getting the employee back to work sooner.
There are many benefits for employers in having a healthy and motivated workforce which include, reduced sick leave, more productive staff, boosts morale, loyalty, and reduced turnover.
For more information in relation to employee wellbeing and the effect on your organisation you can contact the advice team on 01 886 0350