Workplace ‘wellbeing’. It’s a buzzword that’s been thrust into the spotlight and simultaneously landed on the laps of HR departments across the world to try and get to grips with. But it’s not just a trend, the corporate wellness industry is now worth well over £31 million according to the Global Wellness Institute with more and more companies implementing their own programmes to optimise the working (and non-working hours) of their employees.
Working in large corporations herself, Kim Guest, founder of isoshealth, saw the negative effects not considering the health and wellbeing of your team can bring. “When workplace wellness wasn’t a ‘thing’ very little thought and attention was given to the individual. High expectations, deadlines and margins make overtime, on-the-go eating, minimal movement and lack of sleep normal. Granted, this still goes on today and at times is unavoidable. But, what this new movement shows is that companies have an awareness that an unhealthy workforce makes for unhealthy work. Striving towards workplace wellness is a way to solve these issues, improve productivity and actually help people to lead better and healthier lives”.
The Cost of Poor Workplace Wellbeing
And the stats stand up. Vitality found that the average worker loses around 30.4 days of productive time annually due to sick days, or underperformance in the office as a result of ill-health. This is equivalent to each worker losing six working weeks of productive time annually. That’s not to mention times when workers are sleep deprived, stressed or have a low mood which affects their work.
Addressing Employee Wellness
Whilst you may not have the means or desire to implement a full wellness programme, there are some small changes and allowances companies can make to ensure their teams aren’t overworked or prevent them falling into ill health. Making hours and locations flexible, introducing healthy group lunches, including a gym or recreational sport as an added bonus for employees or even allowing time in the day for ‘recreational’ activities are just some of the small changes that could make a huge difference.