20 March 2019
Promoting well-being and healthy lifestyle at work

It is often said that your workforce is your best asset – a healthy workplace promotes a healthy workforce.

Environmental factors should be at the forefront of employee welfare. The key aspect within the Workplace Health Safety and Welfare Regulations 1992 that relates to a common place of work is that if you employ anyone (however short the period) you must, “so far as is reasonably practicable” provide adequate and appropriate welfare facilities to encourage a healthy workplace.

Employers must provide basic requirements such as sanitary conveniences, drinking water and a place to rest and eat meals. However, there are additional environmental necessities that may be overlooked by an employer and the beginning of summer is an ideal time to consider these.

These include:

  • Display Screen Equipment (DSE) – Eye strain can lead to fatigue and headaches so employers must ensure the workstation IT systems are set up correctly as part of a DSE assessment.
  • Space – A work area should be free from obstructions, with enough space to move around and stretch.
  • Ventilation –  A review of the ventilation system should be undertaken to ensure that the system can still work efficiently now that the weather is looking up.
  • Noise levels – Noise levels can have a health impact on staff, contributing to stress and fatigue which may affect their ability to concentrate and focus on their work. This doesn’t just mean noise from equipment but also from phones ringing, conversations etc.

Once the above has been taken care of and everything is in order, it’s time to focus on the people themselves.

Here are a few tips to perk up your staff:

Free fruit

Something as simple as a free fruit can make a big difference. It shows your employees that you’re thinking of them and actively going out of your way to provide a healthy snack.

End of month drinks

This option offers a great way to build bonds within individual departments, and the business as a whole too. It’s not often colleagues get the chance to let their hair down and natter about all things non-work related, so setting up a platform for just that is a great enabler.

Get active

To help your employees meet their fitness goals and have fun while they’re doing it, you could set up sports clubs before or after work, or even during lunch breaks. Having an office Fitbit challenge is also a great way to add a healthy competition. It’s also great if you have a shower on the premises to promote cycling or running into work.

Friday feeling

It’s hard to avoid that ‘Friday feeling’. After a week of hard graft, why not reward your employees with an early finish. Leaving half an hour early can make all the difference.

Employee of the month

You don’t need to fork out on a gift as such –  the recognition itself is enough to give employees a real sense of pride and achievement/

Local partnerships

For a mutually beneficial relationship, see if you can team up with any local businesses to get a discount for your staff. This can include local gyms that offer discounts that then, in turn, aids the getting active part of your plan.

By implementing some of the above, employers should be able to see changes in the attitudes of staff encouraging commitment and loyalty to the organisation. With companies competing to attract top talent, it’s more important now than ever to get employee satisfaction right.

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