Wellbeing in the Workplace, What Human Resources can do for you:

24 Sep

By: Duncan Nortier

Human Resource Advice

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Every year workplaces rely on their Human Resource department to perform the obligatory “Wellness Week” in which the company gives back to their employees with a focus on relaxation and produce healthy minds, as healthy minds lead to healthy work.

Whilst this is important, and much appreciated by the employees there is a slight fault in the thinking that one week will produce a healthy work force. The process of ensuring your employees are happy and healthy is an ongoing one that is supported by the creation of a strong corporate culture where employees feel valid and can communicate their feelings both positive and negative in a safe space that can accommodate both conflict and resolution of conflict.

Kgomotso Mopalami head of Knowledge at the South African Board of Peoples Practices writes that, “Good health can be a core enabler of employee engagement and therefore, employers have an obligation to safeguard employees’ well-being; this does not only benefit employees but organisations as well as the entire society”

With employee wellness being beneficial to the employee and the employer it is time to think about Human Resources can do to aid in this process of wellbeing.

  • With a proactive approach where employees needs are met consistently the wellbeing of employees will be taken care of as the company runs rather than a reactive approach that can halt the progress of the company to deal with issues after they happen.
  • An effective employee well-being strategy should be tailor made to the corporate culture of the company, and its content based on the organisation’s needs and characteristics, as well as those of its employees. There is no cookie-cutter strategy.
  • Whilst one off wellness programmes are not the cure, they still do play an important part in a good wellbeing strategy.
  • Promoting healthy decisions such as serving healthy food during meetings, having healthy food in the canteen, have smoke free zones.
  • Ensure that health and well-being is not a series of standalone initiatives, but integrated into the organisation’s culture, leadership and people management practices
  • Continually Evaluate and improve well-being initiatives to ensure the continuity of employee wellbeing.

Implementing a well-rounded well-being strategy benefits the employees but also strengthens the employer value proposition which will attract and retain the best talent.