The new employee benefit must-have: Health and Wellbeing Support

Pictured: Seb Merritt
Seb Merritt – Operations DirectorArtboard 1

Seb Merritt, a Director of Gloucester-based Brunsdon Financial’s Employee Benefits division, explains why maintaining a wellbeing strategy in the workplace is now as important as the benefits on offer.

The working environment has probably never been more stressful than it is today. Countless millions of working days are lost annually due to mental health and anxiety issues, costing the UK economy literally billions each year. And workers that are stressed or anxious are hardly likely to be advocates for their company. That’s why smart employers embrace the fact that organisations perform better

with a healthy, motivated and focused workforce.

But setting up a structured wellbeing programme could be an uphill struggle for those employers trying to go it alone. The first step should be finding out what your employees actually want and what are the main stress triggers. For example, many workers are stressed out with money worries and that can play havoc with their physical and mental health – and of course their performance at work!  So as employee benefits specialists, we normally recommend a good starting point would be to set up a workplace financial education programme that will identify the financial pressures and provide formal education and guidance. Employees may not be fully aware or have sufficient understanding of how their workplace pension works, or they may be worried that it will not be sufficient. Or individuals may need personal financial planning advice, for any number of reasons, and may not know where to turn.

At Brunsdon Financial we believe financial education is one of the most valuable key resources a company can provide for its employees and we can arrange to come in and deliver a programme that will engage and educate, using various tools, including workshops and one-to-one sessions if required. We can also put in place confidential help lines or counselling sessions, because it’s not always easy for employees to talk things through with colleagues or bosses.

But it’s important not forget about looking after the physical wellbeing of your workers. Health and Safety measures are a given, but there are numerous healthcare and risk benefits such as group life assurance and income protection that can boost employees confidence should they fall ill or be injured and these should really all form part of an overall Wellbeing strategy. We can help build cost-effective packages that suit the needs of staff.

At the end of the day, a big element of any employee benefits programme is communication. And remember that health and wellbeing support is just as important a component of your benefits offering as anything else. How you go about telling your workforce can make or break your strategy. Poor communication will effect little or no change. We’ll devise a comms strategy that will help boost motivation, engagement and morale. Better for your employees. Better for your company.

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