Employee Wellbeing - Planning a health and wellbeing initiative
The idea of planning a health and wellbeing initiative puts lots of organisations into a state of panic, but this needn't be the case. The key to running an event that has a positive impact on the workforce is: research your audience, set objectives, plan the initiative, communicate, take action and evaluate the outcome. In brief:
Research your audience
- Before planning a health and wellbeing initiative look at the data you hold on your workforce such as gender, age and main reasons for sickness absence. This will give you a good base for planning your event and making sure you address key areas. Establish the true cost of absence so you can later measure the impact the initiative has had on the business.
- Ask employees what key concerns they have regarding their health and wellbeing - Example questionnaire.
Set your objective
- What is your objective for implementing a health and wellbeing initiative? Is it to reduce employee sickness, increase moral and motivation or improve awareness and educate employees on healthier living?
Plan your initiative
- Get top level support to show employees you are serious about improving their health and wellbeing.
- Involve the right people - contact organisations that specialise in health and wellbeing activities. By involving the right people you will ensure that you only use specialists that are adequately qualified, experienced and insured. Using a 3rd party organisation will also reduce the impact on in-house resource as the majority of work will be done for you.
- Decide if the initiative will be a one off event or part of an ongoing plan. For ideas on monthly activities check out the example planner.
- Communication is key to making the initiative a success. There are several ways to promote your event, the most successful being: advertise on your intranet, put up posters, tell staff via team meetings, send e-shots and use wage slip advertising.
- Put together a statement of who will do what and by when and ensure the deadlines are followed.
- Short term - Use questionnaires to access the knowledge of employees both pre and post event. These can be handed out at the event and a gift given to employees who take time to complete them - branded water bottles or pedometers work well.
- Long term - Access the impact the health and wellbeing initiatives have had on sickness absence, staff turnover, employee engagement and accidents at work.
Employee health and wellbeing doesn't have to be costly. There are simple low cost/no cost activities that can be built into your programme such as:
- Ask your local leisure centre for a corporate discount. To encourage take up they will often come along and deliver sample activity classes for free.
- Contact your local PCT to see what they can offer for free (this varies across the country). Some PCTs offer free smoking cessation groups, dental and foot care awareness sessions.
- Utilise in-house resource - have you got a hidden talent within your workforce? Maybe a team member runs a fitness class or delivers massage outside of work. (Ensure anyone you use is adequately trained and insured).
- Run team competitions such as a pedometer challenge or wi-fit dance off.
- Run a smoothie competition during the lunch break, get the management to judge it and offer a healthy prize to the winner
- Involve charities such as Osteocare, Lung Foundation, Cancer Research etc
- Offer low cost activities such as workplace massage Smoothie bike and nurse lead health checks
CIPD produce some useful supportive documents on workplace health and wellbeing, to make life easier we have added these to our website.
We work with our customers to provide hassle free health and wellbeing events to fit individual needs and budgets. All of the services are delivered by fully qualified, experienced and insured associates. To limit the demands on in-house resource we provide rotas for each individual session and all we ask is that employees are booked into allocated time slots. Marketing posters are also available on request. To make the payment process easier, we issue a single invoice no matter how many services are booked.
Ideas for initiatives are:
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