Companies should urgently shift away from a reactive “DIY” tradition on the subject of office well being and search professional occupational well being steering to keep away from losing time and sources, in response to a brand new survey.
A YouGov survey launched throughout Occupational Well being Consciousness Week (19-24 June 2022) discovered solely a fraction of UK adults imagine the well being and wellness measures many companies presently select for workers are vital, which specialists imagine is probably going resulting from employers mismatching well being and wellbeing providers to worker wants and never sourcing related or acceptable service suppliers.
68% of survey respondents stated that occupational well being is vital and 67% reported that they do or would discover occupational well being providers within the office helpful, however solely a fraction thought that particular interventions have been vital. Entry to well being and wellbeing recommendation (11%) and counselling providers (10%) rated low in significance for worker well being amongst these surveyed, suggesting that companies urgently want skilled occupational well being steering to higher meet worker wants and to supply specialist service suppliers.
Within the UK, firms usually supply their very own well being and wellbeing programmes with out an occupational well being technique or the enter of an occupational well being practitioner. In April, CIPD’s Well being and Wellbeing at Work report discovered that 87% of organisations supply worker well being and wellbeing providers however solely 50% have a method, with 46% declaring that they don’t have a proper plan and act on an ad-hoc foundation.
Launching the YouGov survey, specialists on the Society of Occupational Medication (SOM) and Business Occupational Well being Suppliers Affiliation (COHPA) warned that firms who present occupational well being programmes with out skilled recommendation could also be losing time and sources.
Dr Jayne Moore, President, Society of Occupational Medication (SOM) stated, “From lowering absences to enhancing enterprise efficiency, we’ve clear proof that occupational well being providers make a major distinction. Wanting on the survey outcomes, it’s clear that employers aren’t taking advantage of occupational well being experience and are failing to offer what workers really need and want.
“A reactive DIY strategy to occupational well being, which we all know is prevalent amongst companies within the UK, is wasteful and ineffective. Corporations of all sizes ought to use skilled occupational well being steering to develop a transparent office well being technique within the boardroom and steer how they put money into worker well being providers.”
In line with HSE statistics from 2020-21, 1.7 million employees have been affected by new or long-standing work-related well being circumstances, with 800,000 of those being work-related psychological well being points and 500,000 being musculoskeletal issues.
Pre-Covid-19 (2018-19) HSE statistics confirmed that workplace-related sicknesses price £10.6 billion to the UK, whereas damage price £5.6 billion in the identical interval. In April 2022, Deloitte discovered that poor psychological well being prices UK employers as much as £56 billion a yr.
Alan Ballard, Chair of the Business Occupational Well being Suppliers Affiliation (COHPA) stated, “From psychological well being to menopause, occupational well being medical doctors and nurses have a wealth of expertise and specialist data that’s presently underutilised by a lot of the non-public sector.
“Many enterprise leaders really feel like they’re fire-fighting well being points as they come up, so bringing in an occupational well being professional to help with a extra strategic and proactive strategy will take that fixed stress out of their arms.
“Corporations that tackle a bespoke well being and wellbeing technique in collaboration with an occupational well being supplier will see improved worker well being and a greater backside line.”
The YouGov survey additionally demonstrated that workers need office well being to be led from the highest. Key elements for worker well being have been work-life stability (76%), good administration and management (66%), and good office tradition (58%).
Lord David Blunkett, Patron of the Society of Occupational Medication, remarked, “It’s encouraging that an rising variety of firms are investing in office well being and wellbeing providers, however employers want to make sure that their occupational well being providing is efficient and significant.
“By in search of skilled steering from an occupational well being professional, enterprise leaders can undertake a extra strategic and impactful strategy to enhancing worker well being, and keep reliability and talent to remain within the job.”