Long working hours, tight deadlines, and ever-growing demands can lead to stress that can greatly affect your employees’ health.
Add to this strict procedures, demanding bosses, or commuting. It is easy to see how these can take a toll on your employees.
It’s also hardly surprising that all of these lead to health problems, such as back pains, high blood pressure, and elevated cholesterol levels.
Of course, there are a lot of benefits to office work as well.
Paycheck is stable, you get to work in teams of great colleagues, and many businesses have additional perks that make it worth the ride.
New Zealanders have the reputation for working hard, and comparing how long they work each week to people in other countries proves this. They are working more weekly full-time hours (43.3) than people in Australia (42.6) or in the UK (42.7).
With so many hours spent at work, it is understandable why you as an employer should keep your employees’ health and safety in the forefront. Here are 7 ideas how to make your workplace a healthier and happier place.
1. Encourage Bring-Your-Own Lunches
At work, we are usually too busy to think about what to eat. More often than not, that means we will turn to fast food as an easy and convenient option. But, unhealthy too.
Encouraging employees to prepare their own meals forces them to think about what they eat and choose healthier options.
Additionally, if they already have a ready meal at their desks, this will reduce the stress of having to go out to buy a meal in the middle of a busy day and leave more time for a rush-free meal.
2. Invest In Healthy Snacks
Many employees use snacking as a way to reduce stress at work. Others do it out of boredom because they cannot stand doing nothing, and chewing gives them a sense of taking action.
Unfortunately, this usually means reaching out for a bag of crisps or candy bars. Neither one is particularly good for the body.
Stock your pantry with a bag of almonds, fresh fruits, or maybe even some celery with a tasty dip.
Although some might not appreciate these healthy snacks, they will not be able to turn them down because they are totally free.
3. Light(en) Up Their Lives
Or, should we say, let the sunshine in! Forget about the old misguided idea that artificial light is better than natural light when it comes to illuminating offices. Forget about windowless offices that nobody wants to be stuck in for eight or more hours. Encourage greater use of natural lighting whether by installing full walls of windows or installing skylights, for example.
Of course, make sure you take into account possible glare and a change of indoor temperature. What you really need is a well-designed office that will best meet your employees’ health needs without hurting their comfort.
4. Make Room For Exercise
Nowadays, many companies offer free gym membership to their employees. After all, many are those who want to exercise, but few are those willing to invest time and money into it. But, since offered gym memberships are out of the office, people won’t always take advantage of it.
That’s why it’s a great idea to install a small gym or yoga room, or even host events. Regular exercise with occasional special events, such as Zumba or Salsa Nights will definitely contribute to your employees’ health, but also to the sense of community.
5. Take That Meeting Outside
It’s simple and it costs nothing. No fancy yoga pants, or expensive gym equipment. But it counts as exercise and encourages creative thinking.
Small walking meetings work best as bigger groups are more difficult to manage and might end up as a waste of time. They are perfect for brainstorming new ideas and processes, but not for going through your company’s sales figures.
Not only are these meetings a great change of pace and scenery for your employees, but they also allow them to stretch their legs.
The change of environment also encourages greater openness. It draws people away from the restrictive, entirely professional confines of office spaces.
6. Create Varied Work Areas
Sitting all day in your office is slowly but surely killing you. Think of it as a modern version of smoking. It affects your back, heart, blood flow, as well as the entire cardiovascular system.
That’s why it is important to provide varied work zones that give your employees different options.
Standing-room-only lofts let them ease the strain on their backs. A pod and couch area allows them to relax a little and take a breather. This will not promote laziness, as many think, but will actually encourage freedom of work movement.
7. Invest In A Clean Office
Last but not the least, investing in cleanliness and hygiene of your workplace is one of the best ways to keep it healthy. That especially holds true for your office washrooms. With Alsco’s Hygiene Systems, you have the perfect option for washroom sanitation.
Our Odour Control System is designed to dispense subtle fragrances on a regular schedule, that keep your washroom fresh. The Hand Care Programme includes high-end products that are effective in getting rid of dirt and potentially harmful microbes.
If you add to this safety and first aid options, you’re sure to keep your employees well and healthy.
At Alsco, it is our priority to help you meet your employees’ many needs. For many years, we have been providing businesses in New Zealand with quality products and services to help improve their workplaces and their employees’ lives.
We aim at ensuring a healthy and productive working environment. One of the ways to achieve this goal is by using sanitation products for the most sensitive areas of your office space. Contact us so we can work out the best plan and offer products specifically customised for your needs.
Call us today and we will do our best to help you get your workplace in shape.
Photo courtesy of Freepik Images