Employee wellbeing predictions for 2020. Hear from the experts
£15 billion a year. That’s how much sickness absence costs companies across the UK economy, according to the UK’s Office of National Statistics. And in 2018, 141 million days were lost to sickness and 17 million days for mental health related conditions. With numbers like this, it’s crucial that businesses look to make positive and impactful changes in the workforce to cultivate a team of happy, healthy and engaged employees.
So what changes might we see in 2020? According to Virgin Pulse’s latest survey – 2020 Vision: Wellbeing Industry Predictions Report – employee health and wellbeing is surpassing the idea of a ‘nice to have’ benefit, and is instead starting to embed itself into the core business strategy.
Sir Richard Branson predicts that businesses will align their values with those of their employees, especially in companies with younger generations. This shift, he predicts, will encourage companies to make bolder changes and introduce sustainable policies, an increase in flexibility and a focus on mental wellbeing and volunteering opportunities.
Professor Sir Cary L Cooper of the University of Manchester has a vision for the future that embraces work-life balance. Some of his predictions include a four-day working week, flexible working locations and hours, along with greater holiday benefits and a focus on corporate wellbeing programmes.
Dr. Susan David, a Harvard Medical School psychologist, places emphasis on the emotional agility of employees, and how understanding and even embracing this can lead to “healthy, sustainable and successful workplaces”. Along this theme, Dr Addie Wooten, the CEO of Smiling Mind, sees an integration of mindfulness into office environments as the way to cultivate a positive and engaged team.
While it’s clear that we are moving in the right direction, there is a lot more that needs to be done for employee health and wellbeing in 2020 and beyond.
As Sir Richard Branson says – “Take care of your employees. They’ll take care of your business.”
Think your office needs to make some positive changes? Contact us to discover our healthy office solutions.
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