We were fortunate indeed to welcome Professor Dame Carol Black – the well-known expert adviser on Health and Work to NHS England and Public Health England – to our seminar programme on Wednesday this week.
Another capacity audience of 200 employers from Public, Private and Third Sector employers were present to hear Dame Carol’s thoughts on the importance of tackling sickness absence and embedding Health and Wellbeing into the UK workplace.
There were many points of interest in the speech – but the one that really grabbed my attention was the assertion that the “tone from the top is what really matters”.
Now this is an important point – and reflects the need to make such issues feature at senior management level in all organisations. So how many employers actively take this approach?
A poll we took on the day of our event suggests that 21% of employers place primary responsibility for employee Health and Wellbeing at Board (or Senior Management) level. Or put another way, only around 1 in every 5 organisations are actively considering this issue at the highest level.
These findings suggest that employers have much work to do in this important area if they are to improve their corporate culture regarding health issues. Some may be sceptical of such a commitment, but the potential returns of reduced absence, improved engagement, and higher productivity must surely make such an approach something of a no-brainer.
The reality is that the importance of this topic dictates that many more employers should be looking to create the right corporate tone around Health & Wellbeing – and indeed hit all the right notes in doing so.
For more information on this subject – and the employee benefits that may assist employers in this space – please speak to your usual Jelf Consultant.
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