Employees are the foundation of your organization. They hold the power to help your business thrive. Creating an environment that supports employee well-being can have a positive impact on their productivity, which can lead to immeasurable success for your business.
Learn more about why employee well-being is critical to driving growth and what you can do to increase employee engagement within your workplace.
Why focus on employee well-being
Employee engagement and employee well-being are linked closely. According to GALLUP’s 2019 State of the Global Workplace report, 31% of employees in Canada and the US are engaged. This is relatively high compared to most other countries (15% world wide), however there is a lot of room for improvement and it gives weight to the importance of finding the right people for the right job.
The impact of employee engagement (or disengagement) is a bottom line issue. Overall, companies with higher employee engagement are 21% more profitable, according to the GALLUP report. By improving well-being you’ll have more productive and dedicated employees, it also shows that, as a company, you care. Also, making an effort to improve work culture has a ripple-out effect, positively impacting your recruitment efforts.
Employee well-being should be looked at from a holistic approach; it doesn’t just encompass walking challenges and providing healthy breakfasts for those early morning meetings. It’s more than physical health, it embodies one’s mood, cognition and even less tangible factors like a sense of purpose.
Employees want to do work that excites and challenges them; they want to feel like they are contributing to the company’s goals and vision. They want to know that their ideas are being heard and that they are creating change.
Tips for improving employee well-being
Now that you know what employee well-being is and how it’s important to the success of your company, how can you create a workplace culture that is centred on employee well-being?
Communication is key
Create a workplace environment that encourages employees to share thoughts and ideas openly without fear of shame or ridicule. When people feel they can trust their colleagues, growth happens. Also, encourage an “open door policy” between employees and management. It shows that the leadership team is open to learn from, coach and support their team when issues arise.
Create a flexible workspace
Flexible workspace has taken on a new meaning since the beginning of the pandemic. When office spaces are able to safely welcome back staff, this could mean not only a shift in set hours (such as 9-5), it could also refer to working from home the two or three days a week or creating more breakout spaces to increase creativity and collaboration between colleagues. Flexible workspaces encourage employees to forge relationships across a wider network, rather than with their immediate colleagues, which increases a sense of belonging and value. Investing in employees often means understanding their situation and allowing flexibility in their schedules.
Encourage an innovative culture whereby people’s ideas are valued and heard across the company and mistakes or challenges are seen as a learning experience. Management that encourages employees to submit their own ideas and lead projects, contribute to a culture of higher self-esteem and employee engagement.
Encourage community participation through corporate social responsibility programs or charitable events. Some companies offer paid time off to volunteer. Helping others, especially outside the working environment, can add to a sense of self-satisfaction and fulfillment. It shows the employees and community that your company cares. Community involvement is also a great team building exercise idea.
Recognise and celebrate achievement
Create a culture of celebration by continually recognising the smaller achievements and employees who go the “extra mile”. The impact of a recognition-based culture cannot be understated. When employees feel recognised, they tend to stick around.
One way to recognize employees is to plan an annual employee appreciation day and survey your team to find out what they would love to do and how they would like to connect with their colleagues. While these days are enjoyed by all, it’s important to commit to creating a culture of year-round recognition.
Measuring employee well-being
Implementing and conducting regular employee engagement surveys are a great way to keep a pulse on employee well-being within your company. The first survey conducted provides a baseline score. Then, as changes are made and practices implemented based on the feedback, the employee engagement score should improve over time. It’s important to monitor and track these changes from year to year to ensure improvement is happening!
Benefits of investing in employees
When you invest in your employees, they come to work engaged, energetic and ready to work! It also helps to retain and attract new employees. This can also help manage your employee benefits cost as engaged employees are happier.
A few more benefits of investing in employees are:
Strong company culture
A strong company culture should be championed by the leadership team. Employees have to see that management is equally invested in improving culture and their own well-being in order to get employees on board.
If employees are engaged; immersed in work that has meaning; understand how they add value, and are passionate about the work they do, then productivity will naturally increase and so will innovation.
Better employee retention
According to GALLUP’s 2019 report, improved employee well-being contributes to 24% lower turnover and 41% lower absenteeism. Improve employee retention and avoid costs down the line by investing in employees now.
BrokerLink Can Help
As part of your employee well-being plan, ensure some actionable items include providing life insurance and health benefits.
BrokerLink has a team of experts in place that can help you create a benefits package based on the size of your company that is tailored to your needs.
FAQs: Improving employee well-being in your business
Are there specific games or challenges that I can initiate to help improve my employees’ well-being?
Employee health & wellness is a great way to start. With more focus on mental health, have management engage in regular check-ins with your staff. Have a health and wellness committee within your organization that plans guest speakers from the wellness community or walking, running or even meditation challenges.
In the age of #WFH (work from home), there are also many online platforms that offer interactive games perfect for team building.
What is a comprehensive workplace health and safety (CWHS) program?
A comprehensive workplace health and safety (CWHS) program is created to help achieve a psychologically safe workplace. The program includes a series of strategies, activities, initiatives and policies developed by the employer, in consultation with employees, maintain and improve the quality of working life and well-being of the workforce. It also contributes to an increase in personal empowerment and growth.