Health, Wellness, and your Employer Brand
It’s no news that investing in the health and wellness of your staff carries a number of significant benefits for both employer and employee. From higher productivity, to reduced stress levels, lowered absenteeism and reduced turnover, the benefits of a healthy workforce are boundless. But many business leaders fail to realise there is a key opportunity to enhance their employer brand through health and wellness efforts.
More than 70 per cent of Australians consider health and wellbeing as one of the three most important factors for a good workplace, reported a 2015 Medibank Private study.
What’s more is that in an Australian study of 2400 professionals conducted by Robert Walters, one in two professionals would leave their jobs if their wellbeing needs were not met. Wellbeing programs have evolved from simply being ‘a nice perk’ to being an essential tool for employers hoping to retain their talent.
Head of Employer Branding at Employment Office, Mark Puncher says more and more job seekers perceive their place of work as reflection of their lifestyle, and employers need to tap into this.
“With health and wellness considered top of the list as an important factor for 70 per cent of job seekers, a strong employer branding strategy marked by health and wellness initiatives should be at the forefront of recruitment efforts,” he says.
“Via social media, job seekers have an insight into what it’s like to work for a particular company. So employers need to take advantage of this online exposure to celebrate their workplace culture, particularly their health and wellness activities – which is continuing to grow as a major factor for job seekers when considering an employer.”
Read on to learn how to enhance your employer brand by showcasing your health and wellness efforts.
Implement effective health and wellness activities.
Founding Director of Employment Office, Tudor Marsden Huggins, knows first-hand the positive impact health and wellness activities has on his team. “We hold monthly ‘buzz nights’ to celebrate team achievements of the past month – and they’ve proven to be wonderful opportunity to get the team outdoors and moving. We’ve kayaked down the Brisbane River, had a blast indoor trampolining, played bowling, laser skirmish and even completed a scavenger hunt across the city. But keeping your team healthy doesn’t have to be an elaborate endeavour. Something as simple as a team run or rock-climbing event, and providing fresh and healthy snacks are some of the easiest but most effective ways to invest in the health of your team,” he says.
Identify and list your health and wellness activities on your careers webpage! Describe the aim of each health and wellness activity and include pictures of your team having fun. Be sure to note even small things such as providing fruit and nuts in the kitchen and vending machines – these perks go along way when it comes to a candidate envisaging working for your organisation.
Update your social media pages
Update your social channels frequently with what is going on in the health and wellness space. This allows you to show you’re investing in the health of your staff on a day-to-day basis, and importantly, that your team are engaging in your wellness program.
Further, you’ll find social media to be a health and wellness tool in itself, enabling you to encourage your team to keep up their great work. As an idea, link all your wellness posts with a hashtag to emphasise the work you’re doing in the space. For example, #<youroganisation>fit or #<yourorganisation>wellness.
There are so many possibilities when it comes to celebrating a healthy workplace culture on social media. You could run competitions in which staff members post pictures of themselves making a healthy choice or a number of steps per day competition. Congratulate different personal health and fitness achievements and of course, post about events that your organisation gets involved in, just to name a few!
Sign up your organisation for larger events
There’s nothing more powerful for an employer brand than real people showcasing the fun they are having as part of your company. Founding Director of Employment Office, Tudor Marsden Huggins says participating in the national cycling charity event, Tour de Office, is not only a powerful health message to his staff, but provides media opportunities for Employment Office to be featured in conjunction with Tour de Office. “Employment Office has participated in Tour de Office since it was established in 2011. In addition to encouraging staff to incorporate exercise into their day and fundraising for a charity of our choice, Employment Office has been able to secure local and state publicity alongside Tour de Office during the event,” he says.
Communicate to your team internally.
Employer branding is about nurturing your employees’ perception of you, just as much as it is about how you are perceived by job seekers. With this in mind, it is essential to remind candidates and employees of the programs and initiates you offer.
Staff can only get involved in health and wellness activities if they know about them!
An Australian study conducted by Robert Australian concluded, “Many organisations do not adequately communicate their workplace wellness program internally to their employees, which leads to under-utilisation of the program and a reduction in the benefits and productivity that can be derived from improved health and wellbeing levels.”
Including a health and wellness section on internal company newsletters, starting a ‘health board’ in the kitchen where different ideas of healthy activities can be shared, and announcing weekly ‘wellbeing news’ in meetings are some ideas to keep communication on all things health open in the workplace.
Whether you have an established health and wellness program or not, now is the time to invest in the wellbeing of your staff, to reap all the benefits that come with a healthy workforce and a strong employer brand that will attract and retain top talent.
Editor’s note: Employment Office provides tailored employer branding services designed and delivered by senior recruitment and marketing specialists. Partner with Employment Office to leverage your workplace culture and make your employer brand shine.