Poor health has affected the economy of different nations across the globe. There are direct and indirect costs associated with sickness. Do you know that lost productivity and absenteeism during sick days cost employers close to $576 billion annually? According to the Integrated Benefits Institute, US employers paid nearly $880 billion in health care benefits for employees and their dependents.
The above numbers show good health is important for business continuity. If the number of employees who use sick days keeps rising, then companies won't be able to run. It's important for employers to inform employees about the importance of their health. Before we look at how health can affect your work, let's discuss some steps employers can take to ensure good health among their employees.
1. Minimize stressors at the workplace
2. Focus on helping employees to improve their skills and resilience at the workplace
3. Assist employees on improving their physical and mental wellness
4. Enable the individuals to build their health awareness so they can make healthier choices
5. Let the staff choose the options that they feel will improve their performance
6. Enable the staff to be physically active
7. Give employees access to the tools that they need to be able to manage their personal, relationship, financial, and other, challenges.
Companies that allow employees a healthy workplace are at a better position to thrive in the industry. The employees are the backbone of the company, and if they are sick, the whole company will fall ill. Here are some of the ways through which health affects your work.
According to the Department of Labor, productivity is the measure of economic performance that indicates how efficiently inputs are converted into outputs. When an employee is away from work due to an illness, there will likely be a case of poor productivity. The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College found out that poor health contributes to a persistent loss of earnings. Considering this, when employees fall sick, they should be encouraged to seek treatment immediately to ensure minimal disruption in productivity.
Occupational health and safety play an important role in ensuring the success of businesses. It's the employer's job to make sure employees are safe. While accidents can happen in the workplace, they should be minimized. To lower workplace risk, the employer should talk to the employees about safety measures and make sure warning messages are clearly displayed.
When employees feel like they aren't protected from health hazards, their morale and productivity will be lower. However, when managers ensure their employees are taken care of, it's easier for the staff to feel motivated.
One's mood is greatly affected by poor health. With a poor mood, the employees will not be able to deliver to the expectations. Therefore, they are likely to fail when it comes to meeting deadlines. This, in turn, affects your customers. Eventually, your customers will begin turning away from you and never coming back.
Consider the case of a receptionist who is always stressed by family matters or workplace stressors. When your prospective customers come seeking guidance from the receptionist, they end up feeling neglected and poorly served. It is clear to us all; the front desk can make or ruin your future in business. When a client feels turned away by a receptionist who is suffering from stress, it becomes very hard to bring the customer back.
Employers need to consider ways to help improve their employees' moods at the workplace and beyond the workplace, for example, to home-related issues. Allow your staff time off to attend to family matters, so they come back refreshed and ready to handle business. The bottom line is proper customer service is dependent on the mood of the employees and stress will have a negative effect.
If your reception staff is stressed and ends up talking to a customer or your staff rudely, the reputation of your business is at stake. The same applies when your senior managers are consistently absent from attending clinical checkups, as there will be no one authorized to sign documents on their behalf. The effect is that your business associates and customers will experience delays when seeking services. In turn, the reputation of the organization is going to be affected.
To avoid acquiring a poor business reputation, from stressed employees who insult customers or delayed service, encourage your staff to take their health seriously. Some employees are unaware of when they are experiencing poor health, which is why it's important for your organization to talk regularly to the employees on health matters. Provide employees with whatever resources will help and inform them. Some businesses have even hired counselors for their staff, so they have someone to talk with when they are under stress.
Poor health, or occupational health and safety, might cause the company to lose valuable time and resources. For instance, consider an accident at the workplace, which then leads to loss of time due to arguing at the court for a settlement. On the other hand, it may be a senior manager who has had to take a week’s leave because of flu or fever. The employee will not be able to perform well and therefore some time is lost waiting for the employee to recover.
Typically, a salaried employee’s pay is not deducted when the employee is out on a sick day. So then the question becomes, how does a company account for salaried employees who are frequently ill? Businesses are losing a huge amount in direct and indirect costs due to poor employee health.
Business projects run for a fixed period to become profitable. However, what happens when the people in charge of the project fall ill? The result is delayed delivery, which reduces the profitability of the whole project. In that regard, it is important for the business to make sure that their staff members, who are supposed to be in charge of these day-to-day projects, are in good health, which will help in delivering projects on time. By meeting critical deadlines, your customers will appreciate your service and reciprocate by referring your business to their friends and relatives; all this is because your employees are available to complete the projects that matter on time and within budget.
We have seen U.S. employers lose billions of dollars, in both direct costs and indirect costs, due to poor employee health. Good health is important in the workplace, and it is the responsibility of the employees to make sure they can serve in the roles appointed. Practicing good health involves eating a balanced diet, exercising, and seeking medical attention. Employers should also encourage employees to stay healthy since a healthy company is a successful company.