Healthier employees are, in fact, happier and more productive. Exercise and workplace productivity go hand in hand. Exercise boosts employee productivity, and employees are more alert as a result of increased blood flow to the brain. Even if employees do not have time to put in a full cardio workout each day, making small changes to meet their daily goals, such as walking during lunch or taking the stairs instead of the elevator, increases health advises Psychology Today.
More effective work days: Being in good physical health improves workability. Not only can exercise reduce body weight and the risk for specific medical conditions, but employees also benefit from improved cardiovascular health, which enhances their stamina to meet the physical demands of their jobs and reduces chances of becoming injured on or off the job. Regular exercise may also help you better deal with stress — which is common in the workplace. Employers who encourage healthy routines help employees curb feelings of anxiety and depression.
Decreased sick days off: Regular exercise reduces a person’s risk of developing certain types of illness and disease. This means fewer sick days at work. Examples include type 2 diabetes, obesity, hypertension, and heart disease — all of which can interfere with work productivity. Evidence indicates that instituting workplace health programs can reduce the average sick leave, health plan, and workers’ compensation and disability insurance costs by approximately 25 percent.
Lower cost of health care: Financially, lower health costs benefit both the employer and the employee. Many small business owners may be able to take advantage of tax incentives for workplace wellness programs. Several U.S. states, including Massachusetts, Indiana, and Mississippi, have considered or implemented tax credits to incentivize small businesses to provide employee wellness programs.
Simple and Affordable Tips to Encourage Health and Wellness
Encourage physical activity
Regular physical activity has such positive impacts for both employees and employers.
Encourage employees to exercise before, during, and after working hours. Many companies offer their employees a (considerable) discount on a gym membership. An alternative, depending on your budget, could be an on-site exercise facility. Or, if that’s not an option, standing desks, a ping pong table, and exercise balls, for example.
Offer and promote mid-day exercise breaks
One of the ways you can help employees find more time for exercise is by allowing employees to exercise “on the clock” for 30 minutes each day. Also, encouraging people to get out and exercise over lunch promotes better work, life balance.
Schedule time out of the office
A team outing can be a significant boost for employee health and wellness. Again, this doesn’t have to be very expensive. Create a corporate team and encourage employees to sign up for local walks or runs in your area. You can also plan an outing for bowling, laser tag or other outside team building activities.
Encourage healthy eating
Not only does food impact a person’s physical health, but it also influences their state of mind.
Research shows that the bacteria in our gut – which are impacted by our diet – affect our brain and may even influence anxiety and depression. Take the food people eat during their lunch break, for example. A simple solution is by providing healthy snack alternatives like fresh fruit in the office. Companies such as smart box even provide organizations with healthy vending machines.
Create a wellness culture
Workplace wellness works better when employees work out together. Whatever activity or sport you’re planning, encourage your team members to find a buddy or a group that can serve as a support network. Members of this network will help their coworkers stay motivated. It’s much easier to stick with a workout regimen when you have peers backing you up.
We all know how vital getting daily exercise is to our body and mind. Statistics gathered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services show that only one in three adults achieve the recommended amount of physical activity each week. Employee wellbeing can be an easy win-win for both companies and their members. To attract and retain exceptional employees, your business should support a culture of mobility, information sharing, and collaboration.
Continuwell provides a combination of technology and people for your employees. Contact us today to find out how our technology can help support your enterprise mobility strategy and promote employee health and wellness.
Want to read more? Download our e-book “Why Wellbeing is Simply Good for Business”