Employees and pensions

How to promote health in the workplace

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Why is health in the workplace so important? What risks are in store for companies that do not sufficiently promote health? What measures promote health in the workplace?

The subject of health promotion in the workplace raises a whole host of questions. We have compiled the most important facts on corporate health management for you. You can make an effective contribution to promoting the wellbeing of your employees with the following tips.

Why is health in the workplace so important?

Let’s start off with the hard facts: On average, every franc invested in corporate health management (CHM) pays you back three times over. It not only saves companies costs, but also lots of time. Those who strengthen the health of their employees therefore do more than just take care of the wellbeing of individual employees. Instead, they also reap the benefits of prevention and suitable measures in the form of a higher performance corporate culture.

The following are some advantages of successfully implemented corporate health management:

  • Improvement in employee productivity
  • Increase in employer appeal
  • Increase in the wellbeing of managers and teams
  • Greater awareness thanks to more comprehensive information on mental and physical risks at the workplace
  • Reduction in work-related, psycho-social risks such as stress
  • Reduction in the rate of absences at the company

As a management task, CHM includes the steering and integration of all company processes with the following goals: Maintain and improve the health, motivation, and wellbeing of employees. All corporate health management (CHM) actions influence behavior and conditions in favor of promoting health. 

What risks are in store for companies that do not sufficiently promote health?

Day-to-day office life entails various factors that can put a strain on health: Poor posture or shortcomings in office furniture can lead to back pain. Tripping hazards can cause accidents. Persistent stress can result in excessive strain and burnout. 

The subject of burnout, in particular, has gained a lot of attention in the past few years – an important step in preventing and combating this mostly work-related, chronic condition of fatigue. Stressful situations over a short period of time do not cause anyone any long-term damage. However, if the strain at work has no end in sight, the human regulatory mechanism comes to a halt. This favors the onset of a series of physical and mental illnesses:

  • Stress-induced depression
  • Dementia
  • High blood pressure
  • Back pain

Regular strain, unrealistic requirements, acute risks and sustained stress at work can thus negatively affect the productivity of your employees. Those who are exposed to such work-related and social risks over the long term often become chronically ill. A lack of health protection for the people at your company therefore also entails a significant economic risk.

What measures promote health in the workplace?

Corporate health management strengthens the physical and mental health of those at your company with preventative measures. Motivated and high-performing employees are the most important goal here – as well as the prevention of occupational accidents and sickness.

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Burnout prevention: Take care to prevent the risk of stress and burnout

Stress- and burnout-related absences cause immense costs for Swiss companies every year. Protect your employees with an effective strategy for dealing with stress. Preventing burnout syndrome at an early stage benefits the mental health of employees and creates a healthy work environment.

The benefits of burnout prevention:

  • Lower costs for illness-related absences
  • Increase in the wellbeing of employees at work
  • Protection for your employees against stress-related illnesses

Find out here why burnout prevention is so important for companies and the economy.

Ergonomics in the workplace: Create healthy workspaces for your employees

If you invest in ergonomic workspaces, you will increase the wellbeing of your employees. And with ergonomic working conditions, you will decrease the number of illness-related absences in the long term because musculoskeletal disorders have a negative impact both on the working and private lives of your staff.

The benefits of workplace ergonomics:

  • Lower costs for illness-related absences and loss of production
  • Promotes the health of your employees
  • Increases satisfaction and performance

Are you sitting and working in an ergonomically correct way? You can find all the information you need about workplace ergonomics here.

Accident prevention: Ensure more safety at the workplace and in employees’ free time

Over one million accidents happen in Switzerland every year. Most of them happen in the home or generally during free time. Effective accident prevention thus includes the workplace as well as private life.

The benefits of accident prevention:

  • Fewer accidents in the workplace and during free time
  • Reduces absences and administrative effort
  • Health and occupational safety for employees
  • Employers show appreciation for employees

We have summarized the most important rules for preventing accidents and for occupational safety for you and your employees here.

Care management: Provide personal support for your employees who are sick or have been involved in an accident

Quick and professional action is required when employees have longer absences after an accident or illness. The sooner action is taken, the higher the success rate for recovery and reintegrating the affected employee. And longer absences as well as high absence costs can be reduced.

The benefits of care management:

  • Lower reintegration costs
  • Support from a specialist during integration
  • Rapid coordination of the parties involved

You can find a range of additional information about care management here.

Other ideas: Promote health with healthy food, exercise, and activities

Corporate health management is a wide ranging subject that knows almost no boundaries. We have compiled additional, tried-and-tested ideas for you to strengthen the health, team spirit, and satisfaction of the employees at your company: 

  • Ensure plenty of exercise: Whether an inhouse sports and exercise room, shared sports activities, or a “walk and talk” meeting culture – more exercise improves concentration, creativity, and posture.
  • Offer your employees healthy food: With team lunches, a calendar reminder to drink water, “Taste and Teach” exchanges, or shared cooking workshops – those who eat healthy can perform better and live healthier.
  • Establish relaxation exercises: Whether office yoga, relaxing background music, deep work rooms (work rooms without distraction), or beds for power naps (for example, afternoon naps) – there are a number of ways you can improve the relaxation level of your team.
  • Organize team events and activities: From a Family Day to office awards – activities ensure greater variety and promote cohesion in the team.
  • Position yourself as a modern employer: With flexible work hours and further training as well as innovation and creative workshops, you offer your staff advantages that also further advance your company. Communicate these advantages both inhouse and externally and in doing so strengthen the value of your company and employer branding.
  • Progressively expand remote work measures: Working from home has become an established part of working life since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic – invest in new tools and opportunities such as remote contests, virtual initiatives, and an online health portal to strengthen the health and company loyalty of your employees.

In short: Guaranteed to be healthier

Admittedly, there is no guarantee of success for these health measures. But if you conduct a serious analysis of the current situation, know your resources, set realistic goals, and take action accordingly, you will create optimum conditions for successful health promotion at the workplace and a high-performance work environment. 

Our WeCare experts would be glad to help you further with any questions you have about the subject of employee health. Take advantage of their comprehensive expertise  in the areas of stress and burnout preventionergonomicsaccident prevention, and care management and from a large selection of health-promoting services. Regardless of whether you need an in-person workshop on burnout prevention or a digital health app for your employees: Corporate health management is worthwhile – for your team and your company. 

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