Employee wellbeing is essential for any small and medium-sized enterprise or small business, not least because smaller teams can really struggle when a colleague goes off sick. And there's a knock-on effect too, with team members being more vulnerable to ill health when workloads increase too much. 
Here at Verve Healthcare, we delve into aspects of employee well-being, physical health and overall staff wellness for SMEs, small business owners and human resources teams, and provide support for a healthy workplace. 
But how can you tell if someone is feeling below par? They may not tell you, especially if they feel they're letting you down or if they feel their chances will be hampered because of it. 
Monitoring employee wellbeing through a Verve Healthcare partnership tells you where you are. Knowing this can lead to improvements in morale, prevent burnout and ultimately achieve better overall company performance. Simply put, if you measure how your staff are doing, you can see where you as an employer will be more effective and where you can make individual and company-wide interventions to keep everyone happy, healthy and productive. 
In addition to practical strategies for promoting employee health, there are ways to foster meaningful connections among colleagues and redesign work practices for enhanced resilience. 
You can also gain insight into how much employee ill health, absenteeism and presenteeism could be costing your business, and how using Verve Healthcare's own regular monitoring system can keep your teams happy and healthy and spot issues before they become a problem. 

How to measure employees' well-being 

Verve Healthcare's regular surveys focus on physical and mental wellness to help companies like yours keep their workforce healthy, happy, and productive. This proactive approach reduces overall expenses related to sickness, absenteeism, and presenteeism. 

Assessing the current state of your team's physical and emotional wellness 

To monitor employee wellbeing effectively, it is essential to assess your people's current physical and emotional health status regularly. Our surveys can reveal various stresses such as anxiety levels, work-life balance, exercise habits, sleep patterns, dietary choices, and physical conditions like back and joint pain, among others. 
Verve Healthcare's wellness surveys are confidential for the individual, but your employer dashboard has an overview of the pressures where your people are struggling. 

Identifying areas for improvement in workplace health 

Your employer dashboard can provide valuable insights to promote employees' well-being. Analysing the survey results enables you to pinpoint specific areas for improvement; we can work together to tackle any systemic themes and - if needed - we can also quickly put in interventions to help your people at scale (like specific workshops, pain clinics, etc as appropriate). 
Additionally, if survey results indicate that many workers struggle with maintaining a healthy work-life balance, you could explore options like offering remote working opportunities or adjusting company policies to encourage better personal and professional boundaries. By taking action in response to these findings, employers can cultivate a more encouraging and nurturing atmosphere for their employees while gaining the advantages of heightened productivity and lower rates of absenteeism. 
Verve Healthcare's regular wellness surveys are crucial for assessing the physical and mental health status of employees. By identifying areas for improvement in workplace health, companies can create a more supportive environment that reduces absenteeism rates and increases productivity. Taking individual and company-wide action based on survey insights can help enhance overall employee wellbeing. 

Mental health support initiatives to boost employees' well-being 

As awareness around employee well-being grows, companies are taking proactive steps to support their employees' emotional health. By providing resources such as self-help materials or referrals for healthcare, employers can help staff navigate through challenging times while maintaining a healthy work-life balance. 
It's important to recognise when things may be spiralling - this is where our healthcare experience really helps. Our clinicians can spot signs of deteriorating mental wellness and physical health and direct you to the most appropriate service. 

Counselling services for stress management 

One way of supporting employee mental health is by offering access to counselling services. Licensed therapists can provide guidance on stress management, anxiety reduction, and other mental health concerns. 

Promoting mindfulness to promote employees' well-being 

In addition to therapy services, many organisations have started providing opportunities and guidance for effective mindfulness. Guided mindfulness exercises help users manage stress levels and maintain focus throughout the day. Regular practice has been shown to improve overall well-being and productivity among employees. 
Organisations can reap rewards from implementing preventative initiatives for positive health, while promoting employee well-being can lead to increased job satisfaction, reduced employee burnout, and a healthier workplace overall. 
Employers are taking proactive steps to support their employees' health. Companies can foster a more compassionate workplace that prioritises employee health and leads to increased job satisfaction, reduced burnout, and a healthier workplace overall. 

Encouraging physical well-being through workplace challenges 

Who's up for a step challenge? Being physically active is associated with productivity and engagement within the workplace, and taking part in joint activities means you can also build a sense of community and team. 
Better concentration: Regular physical activity is known to improve cognitive function, leading to enhanced focus and decision-making abilities. 
Reduced stress: Exercise is a proven way to combat stress, as it releases endorphins that help improve mood and promote relaxation. This can result in reduced absenteeism due to health issues such as anxiety or depression. 
Increased energy levels: Engaging in regular physical activity helps boost stamina and endurance, allowing employees to work more efficiently throughout the day without feeling fatigued. 
Better teamwork: Participating in group fitness challenges fosters camaraderie among colleagues, which can lead to improved collaboration and communication within the workplace. 

Examples of fitness challenges you can do at work 

Step Challenge: Employees are encouraged to track their daily steps using a pedometer or smartphone app, with teams competing against each other for prizes or bragging rights. 
Bike-to-work month: Companies can encourage employees to cycle to work during designated months like May (National Bike Month) or September (Cycle September), offering incentives for those who log the most miles. 
In-house exercise classes: Som employers can offer free yoga sessions, boot camps, or dance classes at the workplace during lunch breaks or after working hours. 
Fitness Bingo: Employees receive a bingo card with various physical activities listed in each square. Participants complete activities during work breaks or after hours to mark off squares on their cards, aiming for a full-house win or specific patterns like horizontal lines or diagonal crosses. 
Daily mile: Encourages employees to walk, run or cycle one mile per day at any time they choose. Participants track their progress using an app like Strava and share updates with colleagues. 

The impact of physical activity on job performance 

A growing body of research supports the positive relationship between regular exercise and improved employee well-being. 
Increased cognitive function: Physical activity has been shown to improve memory, attention, and problem-solving skills, which are essential for optimal job performance. 
Reduced stress levels: Engaging in regular exercise helps employees manage work-related stress more effectively by releasing endorphins that promote feelings of relaxation and happiness. 
Enhanced mood and energy levels: Exercise is known to boost serotonin production in the brain, leading to improved mood and increased energy throughout the day. 
Incorporating workplace fitness challenges into your employee well-being strategy not only promotes a healthy lifestyle but also fosters team spirit and enhances overall productivity. By encouraging physical well-being among staff members, you can create a supportive work environment where everyone thrives both personally and professionally. 
Corporate fitness challenges, such as step challenges and in-house exercise classes, can encourage physical activity among employees and foster camaraderie. Regular exercise has positive effects on job performance including improved concentration, reduced stress levels, increased energy levels and better teamwork. 

Fostering meaningful connections among employees 

Establishing meaningful friendships, both personally and professionally, plays an essential role in long-term happiness. Companies can help remote workers connect with each other while sharing experiences related to various aspects of life. Strong workplace bonds lead to improved emotional health and morale. 

The benefits of strong work relationships 

Having a supportive network of colleagues not only makes the workplace more enjoyable but also contributes to employee well-being. Some benefits include: 
Better communication and collaboration. 
Increased trust, which leads to improved problem-solving capabilities. 
A sense of belonging, reducing feelings of isolation or loneliness in the workplace. 
Higher levels of motivation as employees feel supported by their peers. 
Meaningful connections promote a sense of belonging within a company; a happier workforce is best equipped to face challenges together. 
Establishing meaningful work relationships is crucial for long-term happiness and job satisfaction. Meaningful connections promote a sense of belonging within a company; a happier workforce is best equipped to face challenges together. 

How to create a healthy workplace for employees' well-being 

Workplace well-being is more than just job satisfaction; it encompasses the sense of purpose one feels at work, growth potential, positive interactions with co-workers and being appreciated by their employer. High levels of career well-being correlate with greater engagement, improved emotional health, and higher life satisfaction. 
A Gallup study found that people with higher career well-being were 1.7 times less likely to experience daily stress than those with lower scores on this dimension. Moreover, these individuals were twice as likely to report excellent overall life satisfaction compared to those struggling in their careers. 
Promote open communication: Encourage honest conversations about workload expectations or concerns related to work-life balance. This fosters trust within teams while helping identify potential issues before they escalate into significant problems. 
Incorporate employee feedback: Actively seek input on ways to improve workplace processes and policies. This demonstrates that opinions are valued, leading to increased engagement and commitment. 
Offer professional development opportunities: Provide resources for employees to expand their skills or knowledge in areas relevant to their roles. This can include workshops, training sessions, or even access to online courses through platforms like LinkedIn Learning. 
Create a supportive work environment: Encourage team-building activities and cultivate an inclusive culture where everyone feels welcome and respected. 
Acknowledge accomplishments: Recognise hard work by celebrating successes, both big and small. Expressing gratitude for individual contributions helps boost morale and reinforces positivity. Plus it's a reminder to small businesses that good things do happen - this can often be overlooked. 
Incorporating these strategies into your company's approach can enhance career well-being and contribute significantly towards building a resilient workforce capable of navigating challenges with confidence. 
Employee wellbeing involves an individual's sense of purpose, chances for growth and advancement, strong connections with coworkers, and feeling appreciated. Strategies for improving workplace resilience include promoting open communication, incorporating feedback, offering professional development opportunities, creating a supportive work environment and acknowledging accomplishments. 

How do you promote employee well-being? 

Employee well-being is crucial for the success of any business, no matter how small. SMEs do not always have human resources departments, so the management practices around employee health are really important. If small businesses are to avoid employee burnout and boost employees' well-being, it's important to provide support in a number of different areas. 
At Verve Healthcare, we understand the importance of employee well-being. Our team of experts can help your organisation implement effective strategies to improve workplace health and promote employees' well-being. To find out more about how Verve Healthcare can help improve your company's employee wellbeing, reach out to us today. 
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