Investing in employee wellbeing should be one of the top priorities of employers, as it affects the bottom line of a business. Low productivity due to poor mental health costs UK employers anywhere from £33 billion to £42 billion a year, with additional costs for high sickness absence. More than genuine concern for your staff, this is one reason why making employees happy in the workplace should be taken seriously. It does not only increase their engagement and productivity; it also fosters loyalty and high morale.
All this translates to a more resilient workforce with less sick leaves and absences, and more output — therefore, a positive reputation for your company and overall success. If you want your business to reap these benefits, here are some ways to keep your employees happy and productive at work.
Offer a Flexible Working Option
Giving employees the freedom to adjust their work around their preferences makes them feel that you have trust and confidence in them. With this in mind, they are more motivated to do their job well because they would not want to fail you. So regardless of when, where, or how they work, you are more likely to get better output because you are letting them do their job the best way they know how.
Case in point: A department was turned around from failure to award-winning success in a span of two years when the East Riding of Yorkshire implemented flexible working. Similarly, Vodafone enjoys the business benefits of flexible working while employees enjoy a good work-life balance. Employees who feel free and trusted end up feeling happy and productive. And so, an increase in productivity means an increase in profitability.
Improve the Office Environment
The office environment should not only reflect company values and culture. It should also promote a healthy wellbeing that can boost productivity. Let natural light in through big windows and/or a skylight. Grow some plants, especially those that clean the air. Have a mix of open and closed office sections to give employees working space options, either for socialisation and collaboration, or privacy and concentration.
Make sure the temperature is just right for everybody, or you can offer desk heaters to those who easily get cold. Use bright colours on your walls and furniture — blues, greens, yellows, and reds help increase output and spark creativity.
Plus, think proper monitor heights to ensure that your staff isn’t craning their neck or slouching for long hours, as well as lumbar supports that can help keep a worker’s spine aligned and their back steady over the course of a long day. This can also be a good option if ergonomic chairs are too big of an expense for your budget. Another good idea is using modularity to cancel noise that can contribute to stress. Noise reduction products can create privacy and improve focus while enhancing acoustics.
Promote Health and Fitness
Employee wellbeing is not just about mental health. It should also include physical health. And promoting health and fitness in the workplace is another way to maintain employee happiness and productivity.
Other than providing information on living a healthy and active lifestyle, it would be better to apply it in the workplace. Providing an unlimited supply of healthy office snacks like fruits and nuts can motivate them to work in the office despite the flexible working setup, yet still be productive and healthy at the same time. Having an office gym or offering fitness membership discounts are great perks that can encourage them to exercise, too. If employees start living a healthy and active lifestyle in and outside the office, it will give them a huge boost of energy and a positive overall feeling. And again, when employees end up happy and productive, so does the business.
Remember, the greatest asset of a company is its people. So they should be happy in what they do to make good things happen.
Exclusively written for escreo.com By Aimee Wales