17 Dec How to improve employee wellbeing
Looking to improve employee wellbeing within your company? It has been shown that thriving workplaces implement at least eight of the following eleven activities which are based on 40 scientifically-validated indicators shown to improve employee wellbeing, implementing even one of these actions can make a huge difference to employee mental health (Superfriend, 2018).
A PwC study commissioned by Beyond Blue found that Australian companies who invest in mental health can expect a positive return on investment with an average of $2.30 in benefits for every dollar invested in workplace mental health (PWC and Beyond Blue, 2014).
On average, when a business experiences a 33 per cent reduction in presenteeism, absenteeism and workers compensation claims, they can see a positive shift in productivity:
- an additional 10 hours of productivity for people with mild mental health conditions
- an increase of seven productive working days for people with moderate mental health conditions
- an increase of 17 productive working days for people with severe mental health conditions (PWC and Beyond Blue, 2014).
Strategic investment within your company structures around policies, procedures and employee health will ultimately pay off when it comes to your employee productivity, presenteeism and sick leave. At SiSU Health Group, we have found our average client will save $155 per employee, per year with our Employee Health Program. Find out more on our Employee Health Program here.
Actively improve your employee wellbeing by…
- Actively provide professional development opportunities.
Offer your employees the opportunity to grow within their role and within your company. Providing the opportunity of growth will keep your employees motivated and engaged.
- Recognise people who do good work and reward them appropriately.
Reward and recognition when done correctly goes a long way. Look at implementing official and casual methods of recognition for your team. Employees who feel valued have higher productivity and retention rates.
- Let people see the mental health policy, strategy or action plan in action.
Don’t shy away from your policies, share them with your team, talk about them, let people know that they can refer to these polices at any time. Removing the stigma around mental health in your office will help productivity and presenteeism rates.
- Implement effective policies and practices against workplace bullying and harassment.
Education around workplace bullying policies and practices is important to reduce mental health leave. Ensure your team understands your policies and regularly update them on this training.
- Make it easy for everyone to access to confidential counselling or support services.
There are several providers that allow your staff to gain access to counselling and mental health support. This can be via phone or off-site appointments. Investigate what providers and offerings work for your company and your location requirements. Providing these services can help prevent and reduce workplace stress, burnout, absenteeism and leave.
- Develop good return to work policies and practices for people who have had time off work with mental health conditions.
Returning to work when battling a mental health condition can be very challenging for the individual. Ensure you have flexible policies that are well explained and understood by staff. Providing additional support and practices can help the transition for the individual and their team.
- Make sure that all leaders regularly participate in mental health and wellbeing training by making it an organisation-wide policy.
Culture can be heavily affected by the top down, so providing enough training and education around mental health and wellbeing to your leaders can help keep your policies in play.
- Put clear structures in place so that decision making is transparent.
Transparency around decisions helps your team maintain trust and support in the company’s pathway and goals. By following a clear standard structure around key business decisions people are less likely to apply their personal evaluation behind the reasoning.
- Develop policies to ensure that changes are managed in clear, supportive and positive ways.
By developing clear change policies, all staff can understand the process, transition and outcome. Aiding in avoiding resistance to change across the business.
- Provide access to mental health and wellbeing education.
Give your employees the opportunity to educate themselves on mental health and wellbeing. Education is the key to prevention. By providing a clear understanding and health management techniques, staff can prevent and improve their health on their own.
- Help people practice good work/family/life integration.
Work life balance is a term we have all heard before. Getting the balance right is essential to managing one’s mental health, physical health and emotional health. By demonstrating the importance of this balance, your team can feel supported in their decisions. You can review your flexible work policy or your leave policies and help educate staff about how they can make their work hours, work with their other commitments.