A wellness programme is a new addition to the traditional employee benefits package, it aims to encourage positive mental and physical wellbeing for employees. Adopting an effective wellness programme has been proven to benefit both employers and employees. There are six core areas that wellness has an impact on Physical, Spiritual, Social, Emotional, Environmental and Mental.
When employees are healthier and happier, the rate of absenteeism is lower which in turn saves money. As well as this, businesses that offer health insurance will not have to contribute as much money if their staff are healthy and don’t require as much treatment.
When employees take part in physical exercise, the endorphins are released to contribute to positive mental health. It is also linked to improved cognitive function, which helps employees focus more. All of this combined results in an increase in productivity.
Depending on the wellness programme you design for your workplace, some activities may include employees taking part together, this can build positive relationships within the business.
From our research, we have discovered the best way to design a wellness programme is to start off by laying out each wellness ‘department’ and brainstorming which activity suits your company best.
This can be done by setting up online fitness groups or classes, providing gym memberships or selecting a sport to play such as football after work. Anything you can think of, whether free or at a cost, that can promote physical activity among employees will contribute to their physical wellness.
Similarly to Physical, setting up online yoga seminars or any holistic exercise you think might benefit your staff will have a positive impact on their spiritual wellbeing. You could even set aside time in the morning for staff to practice any spiritual meditation or praying they may require. This would improve productivity and reduce stress and is a great way to start working.
Social wellness is incorporated into almost all of the other wellness ‘departments’ outlined, for any group activity you have organised, employees will get to socialise with their colleagues and build relationships. You could organise gatherings for lunch or pub quizzes if you wanted to focus specifically on social wellness.
Improving the area around your business both on a small scale, such as inside the office itself or on a larger scale such as the town you’re based in, can help benefit the environmental wellness of your staff. Ensuring your employees are comfortable in their place of work is vital to ensure they are working as efficient and effective as possible. Encouraging your employees to take part, and give back to their local community is a great way to exercise environmental wellness. You could offer a day off work to take part in volunteer work or you could organise a group charity event to grow the social wellness aspect of your programme.
Employers can bring positive mental wellbeing to the forefront of the wellness programme. The entire programme is created in order to help employees to feel more appreciated and cared for, both at work and in life. Many of the wellness activities you introduce into your business will help to strengthen the person’s mental wellbeing, this should be one of your main aims. If you wanted to do, even more, you could offer things such as counselling or therapy for employees, you may contribute to the cost of this in order to encourage people to take part. Highlighting the facilities available could really help someone who may need it.
Once you have completed a wellness programme based on your budget and the most compatible activities for your business, the next step is to get your employees involved. Sending out an email or organising a meeting to discuss the new wellness programme and how people can use it is vital in order to ensure you reap the benefits. Communication is key, you may even ask employees what they think of the programme further on down the line and alter the programme accordingly if you think necessary.