Promote a Culture of Health at Workplace

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Flu…Flu…Flu shots….It is that time of the year again and I have been sick for the past week. I am relieved it is just a cold! But i hate the fact that it was contagious and my family was also sick.

Any way, we are good now but having had to take time off from work made me think about the high rate of absenteeism at workplace.

Promote a Culture of Health at Workplace

As per a study conducted by SHRM, unplanned absences lead to greatest perceived productivity losses than planned and extended absences. Interesting to know!

Productivity loss due to employee absence can cost some real money when a replacement employee is not familiar with the work that they are bought in for. And co workers are not able to focus on their regular work as much as they do normally, because they have to fill in for the absent employee. And managers have to spend additional time to train the replacement and get them up to full production. When a replacement worker was used to cover an employee absence, he or she is, on average, 31.1% less productive than the employee being replaced. (Between 22.6% and 36.6% less productive depending on the type of employee absence).

cost of replacement worker

On top of this productivity loss, the annual cost for an organization to comply with administering FMLA also adds up to the cost of employee absenteeism.

Well, this time of the year most unplanned absences are due to sickness. We may never know when we get sick when most around us are coughing and sneezing suffering from a cold or in an extreme case – flu.

What organization should do as an employer

Let your sick employees take some time off and allow them to telecommute during this unplanned absence. Encourage your employees to have a healthy lifestyle and make fitness part of their daily routine. As per Aon Hewitt’s recent study One of the top priorities for organization is to offer incentives and disincentives to motive sustained health care behavior change among employees. Promote a culture of health and well being at workplace. Create an organization wide policy designed to support the healthy behavior at workplace and reinforce the culture of health and well being. Create programs that consists of health education, diet and weight management programs, on-site fitness programs, coaching and medical screenings.

Have wellness programs and have a stake in your employees fitness needs by allowing time to exercise, healthy foods in the cafeteria, offering incentives and expense reimbursement for participating in fitness classes. Provide insurance that supports a holistic view of health-Physical, emotional, financial and social well being of employees.

Now what you can do as a person

Have a healthy lifestyle, Eat healthy, exercise and drink lot of water. Walk atleast 30 mins every day. Now if you know you haven’t taken a flu shot for years, go take one. If you know you have symptoms of sickness be it mere cold, take a day off. Don’t go to office and let others get sick. Simple as that. And mostly understand you can be productive and enjoy your work only if you are healthy. So health first and work next.

What are some cool things your employers do to promote a culture of health at your workplace?

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