You know what they say: health is wealth! And, this adage is true to a great extent according to specialists who point out that healthy employees are more productive.
Finally, employee engagement and wellness are taking center stage in the business landscape. It is increasingly clear that healthy and engaged employees are driving productivity and innovation. According to a 2015 survey report from the nonprofit Health Enhancement Research Organization, over 90% of business leaders believe that promoting wellness in the workplace can affect employee productivity and performance.
Now, it isn’t rocket science that when you are in good health, you are able to complete any task better than when you are dealing with a major headache, for example. And, the same rule applies to your employees too. So, like it or not, if you want to see that productivity rates going up among your employees, you need to reconsider how you promote wellness in your office.
Provide a Clean Work Environment
First things first, it all starts with working in a clean and healthy environment. Keeping your employees healthy is, first of all, a matter of providing them with a clean workplace. From preventing the spread of germs and illness to reducing stress and anxiety and decreasing the risk of accidents and injuries, cleanliness will have a positive impact on the health and safety, and satisfaction of your employees.
Let’s face it, offices can be a significant source of bacteria if they are not properly cleaned. It takes just a sick employee to touch a mouse, a desk or a computer for the virus to spread in the entire office. In fact, according to a 2014 study, once a virus sample is placed on places such as a doorknob or a tabletop in an office, it takes within 2-4 hours for the virus to spread to 40-60% of the workers or visitors.
As for the mental wellbeing of the employees, cleanliness and good design and appearance can play a major role in reducing stress and anxiety levels. Cluttered workspaces, dirty restrooms, and smelly common areas can increase anxiety and stress in employees. Moreover, if you want to eliminate slips, trips, falls or any similar accident in the workplace, you need to keep exit and entrances clear and address spilling and leaks quickly.
Allow Work from Home Days
Let us tell you a secret: 96% of employees believe that showing empathy is a highly important aspect to advance employee retention, according to a recent report on workplace empathy. So, when an employee is facing a health condition, you may want to show that you are firstly a human before being a boss.
Now, we get it, sick days do affect your business’s productivity and efficiency. Yet, so will a sick employee that shows up at the office with bad flu, for example. So, here’s a compromise that will benefit both parties: work-from-home options.
There is no better way to make your employees work productively even when they are feeling sick than offering them the opportunity to work from home, if your business model allows it, obviously. But, for example, if your employees’ task can be completed remotely from any computer, work-from-home days can save you a lot of costs, sick days, and a lack of productivity.
From spearing your sick employees to commute to get to the office to protecting your other employees from a virus or a transmittable disease, providing work-from-home options is a great strategy to show that you care but also get the tasks completed.
Allowing your employees to work from home can also be the ideal strategy to avoid communicable diseases in the office. From flu to viruses and lice, communicable diseases can make all your employees sick at the same time. And, it should go without saying that this will affect your business big time.
And, make no mistake, lice truly are one of the most common communicable diseases that can spread in the office. The experts from Hero Lice Clinics explain” Although lice aren’t dangerous and don’t spread disease, they can be extremely contagious and irritating and distract employees from completing their tasks.”
Provide Employees with Ergonomics
Let’s face it, the most common health problem that office workers experience is back or neck pain because of the fact that they sit for about 8 hours a day in front of the computer. In fact, back or neck pain is the most representative health condition to modern offices as employees are simply chained to their desks. And, unsurprisingly, back pain also represents one of the most frequent reasons why employees are missing work and the second most frequent reason why they visit the doctor.
Sitting for too long every day can result in sore wrists, neck or back pain, and less time spent exercising. Moreover, the worst part of it is that what is causing it is the wrong posture when sitting in front of the computer.
So, obviously, good posture at the desk is the first step to be taken to protect your employees’ health when working in the office. However, good posture at the desk requires the right equipment, be it ergonomic chairs or desks. Efficient office ergonomics will allow your employees to adjust their chair back support and the sitting depending on their height to achieve a good posture and prevent back pain.
Private Health Cover
Health insurance is often a key element of a comprehensive benefits package for employees. in fact, according to data from the Kaiser Family Foundation, nearly 49% of employees in the US receive employer-sponsored health insurance.
Private healthcare treatment for employees is another great way to make sure that you keep them healthy. It provides them with access to private clinics, hospitals, and medical experts to help them recover faster. And, obviously, to become productive faster. Moreover, offering employer-sponsored health insurance coverage can also be a competitive edge for your business because it is a benefit highly prized among employees.
It’s no secret that the most valuable asset of an office is the people working in it. So, that is why it is crucial to take care of your employees’ both mental and physical health if you want them to stay engaged and productive.