Redefining the Broad Definition of Employee Wellbeing   

Right now, the word on everyone’s lips seems to be wellbeing. From workplace meetings to television adverts, conversations with friends to social media campaigns, we’re constantly reminded of the importance of wellbeing and what we should do to achieve it. But what exactly does this ubiquitous word mean, and how do we define its essence in a sea of trending statements that lay claim to the term?  

The Definition of Wellbeing 

 According to The Mental Health Foundation, the concept of wellbeing extends far further than moment-to-moment happiness. Whilst happiness is indeed a factor, the core of wellbeing is characterised by personal, professional and social satisfaction with life as a whole. What that looks like will vary from one individual to the next, but the fulfilment of long-term goals combined with a level of purpose and control seems to be the golden trifactor.  

The Need for Wellness 

So, where exactly did the road to wellbeing start? Since the pandemic, mental health has occupied more media space than ever before. Health worries, financial uncertainty, lockdown loneliness, disengagement, marital stress and bereavement have all played a part in turning our focus to wellness and have prompted employers across the globe to re-examine the effectiveness of their wellbeing strategies.  

With all of these stressors combined with the widespread introduction of homeworking (and the mental health challenges that come with it), the need for employer recognition and community creation has never been so vital. However, in order to achieve this, employers must first recognise the wellbeing challenges in their organisations by understanding what their people want and need.   

What Employees Are Asking For 

In a study conducted by Metlife, a pool of employees were asked to identify their most desired workplace benefits post pandemic. Lifestyle discounts, flexible working and dedicated time for self-care and wellness ranked the highest, with free counselling sessions and financial advice following close behind. A massive 42% of participants agreed that recognition is the biggest contributor to workplace happiness.  

But how much of an impact does employee wellbeing actually have on business performance and success? Research carried out by the University of Warwick found that happier employees are around 12% more productive, and that lower happiness levels show a direct correlation between reduced productivity and issues with employee retention.  

One Size Should Not Fit All 

Now that we’ve pinned down the overarching themes of employee wellbeing, it’s time to get specific. Your own wellbeing strategy should be based on the pre-defined needs of your workforce and should consider unique factors such as age, job role, salary, work environment and socioeconomic and ethical goals. Only by identifying and understanding these specific needs can you ensure that your wellbeing strategy is not just fit for purpose, but best in class.  

Vivup’s all-encompassing wellbeing and benefits solution helps you do just that. For over fifteen years, we’ve been providing market-leading employee benefits that make staff feel more supported, recognised and engaged in the workplace. Because we place more emphasis on understanding your people, we can help you create a culture of physical, financial and mental wellbeing that supports your staff long term – and not just in the here and now.  

Despite the overarching requirements for employee benefits, a one size package does not (and should not) fit all. The needs of your employees are as individual as your employees are, and the reality is that people’s issues are usually kept hidden from the workplace in fear of stigma. Therefore, employers shouldn’t be basing or restricting their benefits on the needs of only those that come forward.  

A word from our Wellbeing Director, Karl Bennett: 

When it comes to offering your employees wellbeing benefits, the key is to understand that one size benefits package does not fit all. Flexibility of your benefits package is essential so that employees can choose what is relevant for them right now. The natural twists and turns of life means that your people can’t foresee what they may need in the future, so it’s vital to provide choice of support options that aid your people both in and out of the workplace. After all, employees that have access to relevant benefits are more likely to engage and utilise them, while irrelevant or rigid benefits will drive poor engagement and uptake.”  

Mental Health and Wellbeing 

Vivup’s dedicated Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) provides your workforce with expert support for life’s ups and downs, 24/7, 365 days a year. Led by clinicians with over 45 years’ experience, the EAP offers help and advice on a range of personal issues, from day-to-day challenges at home to assistance with anxiety, depression, burnout and more.  

Differing levels of support are available to your employees based on their individual needs, with a 24/7 telephone helpline, mental health resources, face-to-face counselling, online Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) workbooks and additional support accessible via a bespoke url. Our EAP also includes access to the MyMindPal™ app: a mental fitness app that provides essential tools, techniques and exercises to help your staff cope with life’s challenges and build healthy, resilient behaviours.  

Employee Recognition and Reward 

Because we know that continuous employee recognition is a proven contributor to higher levels of employee engagement, productivity and retention, we’ve also created a dedicated recognition and reward platform to make easy work of peer-to-peer acknowledgement.  

Vivup highfive is an app-based solution that enables you to show appreciation to your team every day in spite of current communication and remote working barriers. This centrally managed, easy to use platform lets you celebrate employee milestones and achievements in real time, providing a desirable pay rise alternative that really makes a difference.  

As the studies suggest, it’s clear that employees are seeking diversity when it comes to wellbeing. While initiatives like mindfulness exercises and company yoga sessions are indeed beneficial, they don’t address the wider issues that your employees may be facing. Ensuring the financial and physical wellness of your people is not only crucial to attracting and retaining talent, but also helps you to establish a company culture that satisfies the core areas of wellness we covered earlier.  

To Find Out More 

To learn more about how Vivup can help you identify, understand and address the wellbeing challenges in your organisation with our range of meaningful employee benefits, be sure to get in touch today. Give our friendly team a call on 01252 784541, or email [email protected] to request a platform demo.   

 

Sources  

Employee Benefit Trends Study 2020 | MetLife  

Happiness and Productivity (warwick.ac.uk)  

Work and worker health in the post-pandemic world: a public health perspective – The Lancet Public Health  

Health and Work Infographics References (publishing.service.gov.uk)  

 

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