KeepWell Programme Manager, Ibec
Workplace wellbeing has risen to the top of the agenda for companies and is now frequently a core component of business strategies.
This is reflective of an increased focus by businesses on their workplace culture and ensuring it is conducive to staff attraction and retention. Catalysed by COVID disruptions, recognition of the importance of wellbeing has arguably never been more prominent in the business community.
As society has largely returned ‘back to normal’ in recent months, some of the changes the pandemic brought on in our ways of working have remained. Hybrid is here to stay and many employees’ expectations of their employers regarding work-life balance, benefits, culture and remote working have fundamentally shifted. Given the current competitive jobs market, retaining top talent is a key priority for many businesses.
Investing in employee wellbeing
Earlier this year, Ibec carried out a survey of its members and of the top five priorities identified by CEOs, two were directly related to people, talent attraction and retention, and employee wellbeing.
To achieve the desired impact of instilling a workplace culture that is attractive to current and future talent, a strategic approach is required. While many leaders support the idea of placing an emphasis on employee wellbeing, more must be done in committing to investing in defined wellbeing functions or workplans that are treated with equal priority to other priorities of the organisation.
Given the current competitive jobs market, retaining top talent is a key priority for many businesses.
Top tips for business success
There are several traits that we consistently see in organisations excelling in their ambitions to develop a top-tier wellbeing approach.
Dedicated resources – employee wellbeing forms part of the job spec for at least one individual in the organisation. There is a budget allocated to wellbeing interventions.
Shared ownership of wellbeing – responsibility for wellbeing is owned and shared by employees at all levels in the business from the leadership team to line managers to employees old and new.
A clear benchmark – the organisation knows their starting point, understands the effectiveness of what is already in place to support wellbeing and is aware of the gaps. This can be achieved through a gap analysis against a wellbeing framework.
An evolving strategy – the wellbeing programme is designed to respond to emerging trends along with employee needs and stressors as they arise, wellbeing is not a box-ticking exercise but instead, part of how the company does business and a pillar of the people strategy.
Ongoing evaluation – the business regularly evaluates the elements of their programme against objectives or KPIs, assesses the effectiveness of interventions, asks for feedback and makes informed changes.