Promoting Employee Health in the Workplace
The importance of employee health cannot be overstated. It goes beyond smooth day-to-day operations. For a business to succeed, its people need to be mentally and physically healthy — after all, it’s hard to be productive when you’re not well.
Importance of Employee Health & Wellbeing And How it Can be improved
What is employee health, and why is it important? Taking care of your employees’ health in the workplace is not only beneficial to them; it also creates an effective and efficient working environment that benefits the business. Employee health and productivity go hand in hand: A mentally and physically healthy individual is more optimistic, creative, and motivated. Taking care of your employees’ wellbeing also means:
- Staff who feel cared for and appreciated
- Increased morale and job satisfaction
- Reduced absenteeism
- Better staff retention
- A good work culture with positive relationships between coworkers and supervisors
What is HR’s Role in Employee Health?
Ensuring a company invests in the wellbeing of its people is one of the primary purposes of human resources management (HRM). As an employee advocate, the HR manager should focus on keeping workers motivated, contributing, and happy. The key to achieving this is prioritizing employee health in HRM. HR health initiatives should proactively improve employee wellbeing. One of the most common ways to do this is to provide employees with access to medical care through insurance, office pop-up clinics, and more.
One approach that is proving to be useful for many businesses is adopting wellness programs for staff. When done well, these programs can lead to an 80% improvement in organizational performance. Though these programs may seem more elaborate, the cost of unhealthy employees is ultimately a more significant setback.
Employee Health Associated Costs
What is employee health and wellbeing going to cost my company? The relevant question is, what is a lack of prioritizing it going to cost you? Rising healthcare costs and health-related absences are constant challenges for employers. In the U.S., the costs of poor employee health totals $530 billion a year for employers. This cost includes things such as lost productivity due to worker absence, chronic conditions that cause impaired performance, and workers’ compensation.
It’s important to note that these absences are not just a result of sickness. Stress, burnout, and low engagement levels are all major challenges posed by poor overall health. A joint study by The Conference Board, Sirota-Mercer, Deloitte, ROI, The Culture Works and Consulting LLP, found that disengaged workers cost American companies $550 billion a year.
When we take in account factors like workplace stress and depression, the impact is even higher. PwC estimates that the cost of presenteeism – reduced productivity while at work due to stress, depression, or other conditions – actually exceeds the cost of absenteeism.
Mental health conditions affect 1 in 5 adults, and they have a huge impact on an individual’s wellbeing. Even moderate mental health conditions are estimated to cause 150 hours of lost productivity per year for that employee
Top Ways to Improve Employee Health
Improving employee health doesn’t need to be an expensive undertaking. In fact, small solutions go a long way toward creating a healthy and happy environment for your workers. These include:
- Providing health and wellness programs to your employees. An integrated wellbeing program addresses all areas of employee health, be it physical, mental, or emotional health.
- Enlist help from a primary care and insurance navigation company. Eden Health helps employers navigate today’s complicated healthcare landscape across insurance, primary care, and mental healthcare so they can make smart, well-informed, and cost-conscious decisions.
- Provide annual employee health screening tests and health services for your employees to make your staff aware of underlying health issues and prevent bigger health problems down the line.
- Encourage regular exercise in your organization. Promote running groups, grant access to gyms and other facilities, or just encourage employees to make small day-to-day decisions that improve their health, like taking the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Invest in an adequate space for your employees. Elements such as access to natural light, proper office chairs, and desks go a long way toward keeping your employees motivated and healthy.
- Create a workspace that supports mental health with supportive management, regular breaks, vacation time, and more.
- Offer healthy lunches. Remove soda and snack vending machines and replace them with a water cooler and fruit bowls.
- Provide health education with practical and straightforward advice that your employees can put into practice.
With healthcare costs rising, there is a real need for companies to do their due diligence and find ways to save costs. By designing and implementing a truly great healthcare strategy, company leaders can make their colleagues feel important while helping them get and stay healthy in the process. Not only is this the right thing to do, it makes great business sense. Win-win!
Get all the care you and your team need in one place with Eden Health. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you meet your employees’ complete wellbeing needs.