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Healthy Employees, Healthy Business – 3 Ways To Promote Workplace Health

In recent years, employers are recognising the fact that competitive salaries are no longer the only main driver for talent attraction and retention. While the competition for talent remains fierce, employees’ wellbeing are increasingly becoming a key focal point for employers today.

According to Aon’s APAC Benefits Strategy Study, it was found that 7 in 10 employers in Singapore recognised the impacts of stress and mental health on productivity. However, slightly over half of the survey organisations (51%) have implemented wellness programmes to address this, while more than a quarter (38%) indicated that there are no plans to introduce any wellness programmes to employees.

Importance of Workplace Health

Healthy employees translate to a more productive workforce as it means fewer sick leaves and lower medical costs borne by organisations. Concurrently, given that Singapore is facing an aging population, it means that people are living and working longer. In order for organisations to continue tapping into this talent pool, employee wellbeing is no doubt going to be a key concern.

Likewise, people today are increasingly more aware of health issues such as stress, burnout or even mental health issues and its link to workplace stress. As such, employees today look beyond competitive salaries and focus on how the organisation can take care of them in terms of their well-being.

How can organisations promote workplace health amongst employees?

Integration

The first step towards promoting workplace health is to integrate it into the organisation’s culture. There are various studies which support the fact that workplace health programmes are more effective when integrated to impact the entire organisation – employees, infrastructure and activities. Simple changes such as switching towards ergonomically-friendly desks or chairs can help to encourage a healthy lifestyle within the workplace.

Management

Strong support from top management is imperative to ensure the success of workplace health programmes. This is because management can provide the necessary resources to execute these programmes and increase the legitimacy of these health programmes. Concurrently, management also acts as a role model in championing the acceptance and uptake of these health programmes. With the rising gig economy, these health programmes should be made accessible to employees to work shifts or remotely.

Ownership

Finally, employees should be able to take ownership of their own health. This includes educating employees on how to take care of their own physical and mental wellbeing at work. At the same time, encouraging employees to initiate their own health programmes, utilisation of wearable technology and health monitoring applications can help to provide a sense of ownership and empowerment as well.

Employee health is crucial to drive productivity and engagement levels within the workplace. There are various ways in which organisations can monitor the employees’ wellbeing through applications and employee analytics. These can then help management and HR to create appropriate health programmes to encourage a healthier lifestyle amongst employees.

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