Why health and wellbeing matters to business

15 Feb 2022
BY Dave Salisbury

Why health and wellbeing matters to business

When we talk about ‘assets’ at work, a lot of the time thoughts will go straight to high-tech IT equipment, business premises, or a fleet of vehicles. And it’s true that they come under the asset category and the ‘cost’ of them would be significant to replace them, but when look at ‘value’ instead, I will always stand by the belief that our employees are our biggest asset. Our team wonderfully represents our brand and our company and are essential cogs in the Zicam wheel, so I will always put their health, wellbeing, and welfare first.

How do we look after our employees?

At Zicam, we believe that there are two aspects to employee health and wellbeing and that’s physical health and mental health. It was important when we were looking to implement our healthcare scheme that, as well as access to people who could look after physical health, there were professionals who could also offer mental health support through counselling. Everyone struggles from time to time, and after the last year or so of living through a global pandemic, keeping ourselves mentally healthy as well as physically healthy has become increasingly important.

It’s also essential that the infrastructure we offer is right for the team members. Ergonomic chairs and assessments of workstations contribute to making sure back and necks are protected, also everyone is actively encouraged to stand up regularly and get away from their desks.

So, why is employee health good for business?

Simply put: it just makes sense! But here are some great reason why employee health is good for business –

  1. Increased productivity. When people feel healthy, happy, valued, and well cared for it makes sense that they’re going to be more productive. Even if it’s simply just because overall productivity drops when people are away from work. What I’ve noticed as well is that when wellbeing is high, people are more willing to contribute to meetings and ideas; they’re happier and have a buzz about them that’s engaging. Concentration is better and output increases with a happy employee. When someone is feeling under the weather, or feels mentally ill, of course, they’re not going to feel like getting through a load of work – that’s when our ‘mental health first aiders’ will step in to check up with that colleague.
  2. Cost saving. It sounds a bit ruthless when we’re talking about people, but from a business perspective, a healthy workforce is a cost saving. When an employee is off work even for a short period, there’s a time and money implication for the business. An ongoing physical or mental illness and prolonged absence can become really costly, especially if a temp is required to fulfil commitments. If we look at it the other way round, healthy employees are going to be happier in their work and are less likely to move on to another company, so recruitment costs are kept to a minimum.
  3. Company representation. The days of a company pension and a gym membership as tangible workplace benefits have been on their way out for a while now. Having a strong health and wellbeing policy and associated free services reflects well in terms of brand image. It demonstrates that we do what we say (looking after valued employees) and shows that we’re a responsible and committed employer. Instead of just looking at the remuneration package a potential employee will also ask about health and wellbeing schemes and what the company does to take care of its staff. A good offering shows a caring brand.

I believe that creating a positive and sharing culture at work can also increase the levels of health and wellbeing. Everyone has a right to an opinion and shared ideas about the business – after all, it’s their business too. It’s well proven that when people know how they fit into a company, how they contribute to its success and that they are valued within it, they’re going to feel more engaged with it and happy to be there.

All in all, protecting your most valued asset is well worth the investment.

Donna Doughty, Office Manager & Director, Zicam Integrated Security Limited.

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