Worker stress is a concern for every organisation. Stress is a leading cause of absenteeism which costs the UK economy in the region of £28Bn per annum . It also affects staff morale, reduces unit cohesion, affects the ability of the business to achieve its KPIs and impacts its reputation.
In order to reduce staff stress levels, businesses may choose to monitor employee wellbeing in the workplace.
So, what is employee wellbeing in the workplace?
Employee wellbeing describes the health of staff that are employed by a business. It refers to their mental health, wherein actions are taken to reduce staff stress levels and to improve their experience of being at work.
It centers upon the emotional health of employees, with businesses developing and implementing strategies aimed at improving an individual's ability to cope with the stresses of their job and other life events.
It also takes into account the physical health of an individual. Chronic health conditions can affect an individual's ability to conduct their work in comfort. Businesses can take targeted measures to help their employees to make good health decisions and to improve their comfort. This can range from providing orthopedic chairs to offering free fruit and incentivising them to exercise.
How to monitor employee engagement and wellbeing in your workplace
There are a number of strategies for monitoring employee wellbeing and in this post, we will discuss the ten most common.
- Regular 1-2-1 reviews.
Every manager should meet one-to-one with each member of their team on a regular basis. This meeting should be used to check that the employee is finding their workload manageable, to share news about upcoming company events, training opportunities or other relevant project information, and to give each individual an opportunity to voice any concerns they may have.
- Regular team reviews.
It is just as important that managers meet with their entire team at routine intervals. This reduces suspicion amongst staff that others may be better informed than they are, allows progress to be monitored, plans to be made and workload allocated in a fair and manageable way. Remote workers must be included and given sufficient time to log in and join the meeting.
- Staff engagement surveys.
Anonymous staff surveys can provide valuable insight into the unfiltered thoughts of the workforce. The response rate alone can provide useful information for analysis. A high response rate suggests high levels of employee engagement (unless the feedback contained within is overwhelmingly negative), whilst a low return rate hints at a culture issue.
- Monitor absenteeism.
By monitoring employee absence and the reasons behind it, it is possible to build a picture of the health of individuals within the organisation. Recording when and why an employee calls in sick is the starting point, but where time management tools are in place, it becomes possible to check whether all employees are working their contracted hours.
- Monitor productivity.
Dividing the output of a team by the hours worked results in a productivity level that can be plotted on a graph and used to create a trend line. Monitoring this trend line will alert managers to any decline in productivity and allow them to take necessary actions to restore efficiency.
- Monitor staff turnover.
High levels of staff turnover is a good indicator that your staff are not happy. If you notice a spike in resignations, it is essential that the reasons for this spike are thoroughly investigated and the root cause addressed to prevent further attrition.
- Effective use of exit interviews.
Exit interviews allow employees to give their honest feedback about a business and their reason for leaving. Where they are leaving due to shortcomings in employee wellbeing, they may be ideally placed to propose ways in which it could be improved.
- Update company wellbeing policies.
Every business should have a company policy for employee wellbeing. It may be an addendum to a health and safety policy or a standalone document. It must be available to all staff and detail the escalation route that they should follow for raising concerns or seeking help.
- Training for management personnel.
Your staff will emulate the behaviours demonstrated by their managers. Where managers promote the importance of employee wellbeing and actively engage in activities that reduce their stress levels and support a healthy lifestyle, others will follow. Your managers should be trained to recognise the importance of their role, and rewarded for exhibiting the right behaviours.
- Use technology.
There are a number of digital wellbeing solutions available that can help employees to monitor their own stress and activity levels, track their sleep patterns and seek help should they identify an unhealthy pattern emerging.
There are many ways in which to monitor employee wellbeing in the workplace and businesses should tailor their approach to suit their particular circumstances and setup. If you need help implementing an appropriate strategy for your business, please contact Terryberry today for a demo and to learn about how our range of services can support your business to deliver optimum results through enhanced employee wellbeing.