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Home » Employee Wellbeing » Supermarket chain wins award for putting staff wellness at top of agenda

Brian O’Shea

HR Director, ALDI

Attracting and retaining a diverse workforce, while fostering an environment of inclusion and appreciation, demands more than offering competitive wages, which this leading grocery retailer has made it its business to provide. ALDI takes great pride in the initiatives it has in place in order to look after the wellbeing of its people.

With a workforce of more than 4,700 across its 161 stores, along with two distribution hubs and regional offices and a national head office, the retailer has sustained its business growth in Ireland since its establishment in 1999. This steady expansion is set to continue with plans to open even more new stores over the coming years. The existing workforce is already benefitting from a suite of initiatives offering support, help and advice to ensure their health and wellbeing remain a priority.

Embracing inclusion and care

The execution of the company’s five wellbeing pillars within their overarching wellness strategy has seen the retailer recently awarded the KeepWell Mark accreditation from Ibec — the country’s largest and most influential business representative group.

The programme focuses on key areas of workplace wellbeing including mental health, physical and nutritional wellness, to name but a few areas Brian O’Shea, HR Director, says:

“Our five pillars of our wellness strategy have been in play for a number of years and recognise the importance we place on looking after our colleagues.”

“As a business, we have become synonymous with great rates of pay, but ALDI is about more than market leading pay rates. We offer a fantastic offering in how we care for and support our colleagues.”

App aiding employee wellbeing

To provide the very best support to its team, the retailer has developed tools and platforms such as MyWellness, and partnered with leading specialist providers to provide information, resources and access to leading specialist providers.

This include the MyALDI app, which over 95% of employees have downloaded. It provides a huge amount of information, including access to the five pillars of physical, mental, financial, social and nutritional wellness. Their definitions and examples of the hep and advice follow.

Social wellbeing is not just about having a packed
social calendar. It’s about having a sense of
belonging and feeling valued as a person.

Mental: easy access to support

Partnered with mental health charity, Aware, the retailer is working hard to erase the stigma that still exists around mental health by enabling colleagues to easily find help and support if needed. There is also the support of the Vhi employee assistance programme for the entire workforce and their family members to avail of free of charge. It has also initiated its Supporting Mental Wellness leader training across the business to ensure that leaders are equipped to support colleagues who experience mental health challenges.

Financial: find the best deals and advice

This offering includes independent advice and a one-stop shop for colleagues looking for the best deals on a wide range of products and financial advice. People can tap into things like professional finance webinars and can feel more at ease about their money decisions knowing the service is backed by their employer.

Physical: platform for exercise and diet

his encompasses lifestyle, diet and the relationships between physical and mental health, plus the importance of physical exercise and a good diet. For example, employees can tap into fitness on-demand platforms where a whole range of exercise programmes for all levels of ability is available. In addition, several events are supported internally to support the message of physical wellness.

Social: feel connected and valued

Social wellbeing is not just about having a packed social calendar. It’s about having a sense of belonging and feeling valued as a person. A wide range of help and advice is available. This includes support for carers, drug and alcohol information and aid, for instance.

Nutritional: campaigning for wellness

This can help staff take care of their minds and bodies by ensuring they understand healthy food choices for their overall mental and physical health. It comprises detailed nutritional and wellness advice along with information on annual campaigns, such as January’s Learn to Love Drinking Less.

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