Why workplace wellness can help do wonders for your business

Discover effective workplace wellness strategies in your business. This can help boost employee wellbeing, engagement and job satisfaction.
· 07 May 2024 · 5 minute read

What is workplace wellness?

Workplace wellness is a set of initiatives, policies and programs that help promote the health, wellbeing and productivity of your employees.

It covers physical, mental and emotional health. Wellness in the workplace also includes work-life balance and job satisfaction.

Workplace wellness plays a vital, interconnected role in the workplace. It’s crucial in maintaining the physical, mental and emotional health of workers and can help reduce burnout.

According to the HR Institute of Australia [PDF, 605KB] two-thirds of workers (68.5%) felt like they were burning out at work. This is impacting performance, job satisfaction and commitment.

Workers who often felt like they were burning out reported experiencing:

  • Unachievable job demands (93.5%)
  • Poor workplace relationships (90.6%)
  • Harassment (87.9%) in their workplaces


How can workplace wellness benefit your business?

The benefits for employees’ physical, mental and emotional wellbeing are very clear. And they can have a positive knock-on effect for your businesses.

Healthy and happy employees are often engaged, motivated and productive at work. Wellness programs can also help reduce absenteeism and presenteeism - that is being present but not productive at work.

Promoting work-life balance, offering mental health support and managing stress can also help. Benefits include stronger employee focus, creativity and job performance.

Attracting top talent can be one of the biggest challenges facing a small business. Offering comprehensive workplace wellness programs can help attract talented individuals. It can help position you as an employer of choice. This is because people are likely to prioritise work-life balance and a healthy work environment.

Employees may be more likely to stay with a company that invests in their health. This can help save money on recruitment and training costs in the long run.

There are initial costs in implementing wellness programs in the workplace. But the long-term benefits can offer significant cost savings. For example, lower healthcare expenses, reduced absenteeism and increased productivity.

Investing in workplace wellness initiatives also helps highlight a commitment to employee wellbeing. This can enhance your company's reputation and help build trust with customers and stakeholders.


Things to consider when implementing workplace wellness programs

The benefits of wellness programs are clear. Yet they can be difficult to set up. Consider the potential challenges that could arise and how you might overcome them.

It can be difficult to divide funds, particularly in the current economic climate. Consider the impact and benefits employee wellness initiatives could have over time.

Planning, putting in place and managing wellness programs competes with other responsibilities. Consider how you might be able to delegate among your team.

Collecting data, analysing results and identifying relevant success metrics are time-consuming and resource intensive. It might help to speak to your peers and understand if any useful resources are available to help.

It can be difficult to tailor workplace wellness programs to meet the diverse needs of your employees. Consider what might make the biggest difference before building programs out further.


How to promote wellness in the workplace

Beginning is often the hardest part. Below we explore some strategies to help get your wellbeing initiatives underway.

Consider forming a wellness committee. It might help to gather a broad range of employees from different departments. They can help generate ideas, plan activities and promote wellness initiatives. It also helps provide a greater sense of ownership among people.

  • Gather feedback from employee surveys to understand wellness needs, preferences and interests. This information can help your business tailor wellness programs for specific employees.
  • Consider implementing flexible work schedules and hybrid work options. These can help promote work-life balance and reduce stress.
  • Workshops, seminars, or webinars can also be useful. Popular topics include nutrition, stress management, exercise, mental health awareness and wellbeing.
  • A positive and supportive work culture begins from the top. Senior leaders help set the tone for wellness culture, and open communication. The HR Institute of Australia report [PDF, 605KB] supports this. Almost one-third of workers don’t feel comfortable talking about mental health (31.9%) or accessing mental health programs (33.1%) at work. But more workers feel comfortable talking about wellbeing (76.2%) and accessing wellbeing programs (73.5%).
  • Consider integrating wellness initiatives into company policies. This includes offering wellness benefits and flexible leave policies for health-related activities. You can also help create a forum for people to feel comfortable talking about wellbeing.


How do you know if your workplace wellness programs are successful?

Measurement is important in understanding the positive impact of your wellness programs. Below we explore some ways to help you measure success.

  • Conduct regular surveys to gather feedback from employees about their experiences. How satisfied are they? What needs improvement?
  • Track absenteeism rates, sick days, and attendance patterns. Do this both before and after putting workplace wellness programs in place. Do you see a reduction in absenteeism?
  • Track participation rates and attendance at wellness events and activities. Are your employees using any wellness resources?
  • Put productivity metrics in place. This can include work output, quality of work, efficiency and employee performance evaluations. If employees report being happier, this should have a positive impact on productivity.
  • Collect qualitative feedback, testimonials and success stories from employees. This can help you understand the impact on their lives. You can also use them to promote your success to other employees and the industry.


Wellness working wonders in your business

Workplace wellness programs can help positively impact your business. Tackling stress, promoting work-life balance and supporting mental health, can help prevent burnout. It can also help foster a healthier and more productive workforce.

Investing in wellness in the workplace can also help boost employee morale and performance. It can help enhance your company reputation and help drive long-term business success.

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