It’s time to talk about workplace wellbeing! Something that should be on every employer’s lips, whether they are working, on. The modern day working sphere has moved heavily towards encouraging health and wellbeing more and more. And so it should.
Employee’s spend a lot of their time at work, so the state of their wellbeing inside of the workplace is extremely important. When organisations promote workplace wellbeing, this can develop a positive working environment and culture for their people.
In fact, it can be the difference between leaving and feeling excited about coming back tomorrow, or logging off and needing excess time to recover from a deflating day. As an employer, even hearing those words should motivate you to get the ball rolling on your wellbeing strategies and ideas if you haven’t done so already.
So without further ado, we’ll take the first roll of the ball to offer some ideas on how to improve your employee’s workplace wellbeing and help your organisation thrive.
What is workplace wellbeing?
For those of you who are familiar with workplace wellbeing, you’ll no doubt be familiar with what it means. But just to recap so we’re all on the same page, workplace wellbeing refers to the environment created and promoted by employers, and the effects this has on their people. It encompasses many aspects of the working life including, mental, physical, emotional and economic health, and can be affected by a wide range of things.
Ideas to improve your employee’s workplace wellbeing
1. Encourage self-care
Self-care is a vital influence on mental and physical wellbeing. Ensuring your employees have the opportunities and support within the workplace to be able to maintain this can be crucial to preventing issues such as: burn-out, stress, anxiety, and exhaustion.
And the truth is, not all of us are the greatest at putting ourselves first. When employees have a great affinity and passion for their work, this can often come with working extra hours to get that project over the line or meet that deadline. Whilst this is all with good intentions, it is up to the organisation to recognise when an employee is carrying out tasks or taking on workloads to the detriment of their mental health. As well as looking out for other factors affecting their mental health and wellbeing too.
Mental health support
Ways in which you as an employer can help to encourage self-care could be to partner with mental health support through apps or organisations that offer specialist help. These apps often detail the importance of taking care of yourself, as well as providing 24/7 help for maintaining mental health.
Carrying out research to find specialist support links offering mental health services such as Mental Health Matters, can also be a big help to your people. Sometimes taking the first step to looking for the right help can be difficult, so take it for them by pointing them in the right direction.
You can also train in-house mental health first aiders, who are trained to deal with stress and emotional distress. This means employees have people on hand who are equipped to take care of those needing face to face help.
Mental health first aiders are something we have invested in at Hive. They have proven successful, and their role is a pivotal element to your wellbeing strategy.
Physical health support
Health and fitness are another factor in helping maintain self-care. Encouraging your employees to look after their physical health could have an enormous impact on how they show up to work. If they feel like they have the capacity to take care of themselves, how they feel in their day to day life, physically and mentally, can be amplified too.
You can help with that capacity by offering health benefits such as gym membership discounts, health and fitness app subscriptions, allowing time out for health check ups and offering health insurance.
You could even carry out polls to see what extracurricular activities or clubs your people are interested in, and run group sessions to encourage a positive social aspect to health too. 5 aside football groups, or yoga groups for instance.
2. Invest in employee voice platforms
Employee voice is paramount to how your employees engage with your organisation and whether or not they feel a sense of belonging.
Believe it or not, your employees that are involved in the on-the-ground day to day running of the business are exposed to many elements of the organisation that leaders and decision makers don’t always get to see. Which makes their insight and feedback crucial to your business success.
By amplifying employee voice, you can engage employees, make improvements to the environment, processes, culture, and benefits. And this can all be done by using platforms such as Hive. Hive offers multiple channels of communication, feedback and recognition to empower employees to speak up about what’s on their mind. Big or small.
With Hive, employees can feedback anonymously and have 24/7 access to let HR leaders know what’s been keeping them awake at night with Hive Open Door.
Hive surveying is another tool businesses can use to receive the feedback they need to make ongoing improvements to support their staff, and enhance the working experience as much as possible.
When your employees feel like they have a voice that is being heard/listened to, you’ll notice positive changes such as an increased employee retention, increased customer satisfaction, and more engaged employees. Supporting your employees in the right way reaps a host of great benefits to the organisation as a whole.
3. Regular one to one performance reviews
Are you helping your leaders lead? Setting an expectation for your managers to regularly check-in with their teams on a one to one basis can help with tracking and improving performance, on top of maintaining workplace wellbeing.
Whilst one to one performance reviews are great to see if your team is on track, it is also a way for you to check in with workloads, and offer help and support where your people may need it. And if they are on track, great! Employee recognition tools like Hive Fives are a great way to applaud good performance, and boost confidence and morale.
If they’re falling behind, why? Is it something internally that is affecting their work? Is it something in their personal life that could benefit from some flexibility at work? Your employees are working hard, but everyone has off days. Unless you check in with them you’ll never know how they feel, or what’s going on that could improve their day. Helping your managers and leaders become a support system for their people can improve team dynamics and increase workplace wellbeing.
4. Offer flexible and remote working
Many of us will often question how we’re meant to juggle work, family time, a social life, time for health and fitness and other extracurricular activities. Lots of us may even feel deflated at the thought of not being able to manage all of these things.
The reality is, that it’s actually not that easy to do, especially around a 9-5 job. Not all of us are circus performers, and struggle to find the balance. One thing that is certain is that for the majority of people work is their livelihood and how they pay their bills. So of that entire list, it’s often the one people will prioritise.
However, if you as an organisation recognise the importance of work-life balance and offer a flexible working environment, this can do wonders for employee wellbeing. It means your employees don’t have to worry about sacrificing holidays or pay to attend a much needed doctors appointment, or their child’s school performance.
Not only does this allow employees to manage different aspects of their life better, reducing stress levels and exhaustion, but it will also result in an appreciation for the organisation. In turn, performances, loyalty, retention and workplace wellbeing could skyrocket!
5. Offer career progression and growth
Technically, a job and a career are two different things. A career is usually something people picture as long term. They see themselves moving up the ranks, learning more and gaining experience with the intention of becoming experts in their field. A job, for many, is something that they’d happily jump from role to role, company to company because it simply does what it needs to do. Pay bills. Either is perfectly fine!
But for those who want a career, ensuring that you retain the talent that aims higher and takes the initiative to upskill, is paramount. To do that, offering a progression route and regular training opportunities is key.
Finding out what areas your employees want to develop in, how they want their career to pan out, and working with them to roll out a flexible plan of how to achieve this can motivate your employees and give them the vision that their success is within reach.
With the knowledge that they’re working hard and will be rewarded, this can positively impact their wellbeing. So remember! Give your employees the opportunities they deserve to reach their potential. In turn, your organisation should reach its potential too.
6. Fair salaries
This next idea to improve your overall workplace wellbeing for employees is simple; pay your employees what they deserve.
With the current climate and cost of living continuously on the rise, you most likely have many employees concerned about managing their outgoings. This will inevitably have an impact on their wellbeing.
Take a look at your employee salaries in line with cost of living increases, and boost their pay packet where possible. Easing the financial burden of the current economy for those who need it won’t go unnoticed by your people.
Regularly reviewing salaries is also not only a best practice for staying competitive in your field and retaining your talent, but also for recognising hard work and performance.
There are many motivators that can impact an employees mindset, ambition, confidence and wellbeing, and one of them just so happens to be a fair salary. If your people take on more responsibilities, or are consistently going above and beyond to help your organisation reach its goals. Give them the credit. Figuratively and literally.
7. Encourage a supportive and positive culture
It goes without saying that the people you work with can make or break your experience. So having a positive culture where colleagues and leaders support and encourage one another plays a huge part in workplace wellbeing.
When your employees have people around them that believe in them, the work they’re producing and their ideas, their confidence, performance, productivity and happiness can soar.
This should start from the very top of the organisation and filter down to every employee.
To do this, a great place to start is encouraging collaboration across teams. Regular brainstorming sessions to see where each department can help one another out to impact bigger goals can be a huge wellbeing driver. When there’s an environment that facilitates everyone’s ideas and opinions, where there are no ‘silly’ questions, it helps with a sense of community and belonging. This can also nurture stronger relationships across teams.
Adding social events into the calendar for your workforce is a great idea for enhancing employee wellbeing. It gives them a chance to switch off from their daily tasks and get to know the people they spend their days with on a more personal level.
This enablement of social enjoyment and fostering a positive culture of friendships and support among colleagues can have your people making their way to work with a spring in their step. It can also bring together a fragmented workforce made up of remote and home workers. So no one misses out on positive interactions.
And that makes 7!
With the ideas above, you should start to see improvements in your employee workplace wellbeing. If you’re ready to take the next step to engaging your customers and workplace wellbeing through the power of employee voice, have a chat with team Hive today who can give you a personalised overview of our platform.