The majority of today’s employees spend approximately 90,000 hours at work in their lifetime. With such a large amount of time spent within the workplace, this environment is inevitably going to shape a person’s health habits. And if negative, this could have an incremental impact on their lives, both in and outside of work. Employers should therefore be focusing on how they can help to encourage employee wellbeing.

Dedicate more time to mental health

There is no doubt that every business depends on having healthy and productive staff, after all, they are the ones that keep the wheels turning. But it isn’t just a case of giving them a good wage packet or holiday allowance; to improve workplace wellbeing employers need to dig beneath the surface and build a supportive culture that values mental health.

This doesn’t have to be a costly endeavour, in fact, it is quite the opposite. Instead, it starts with encouraging staff to talk, whether that be about their challenges or about their day. For example, offering fully confidential telephone wellness sessions will enable the team to speak openly in a safe and comfortable space. An open culture is key to relieving pressures and removing the stigma around mental health.

While there is huge value in talking through the challenges employees are facing, it is also important to emphasise the successes. Shout out about that promotion and flag that positive customer feedback – it is only by celebrating the positives that you will banish the negatives. Team this open approach with inclusive events that recognise staff achievements, such as after work drinks, and companies can build on creating a positive work environment.

Ultimately, it is about providing a relaxed space in which employees can excel. Implementing meditation sessions, monthly massages and an on-site calm room will help to ease the stressors weighing down on so many staff and add some positivity back into the day.

Keep evolving

There’s a lot to think about when it comes to designing a supportive workplace culture. But like anything in business, it is important to adapt to the employee’s needs. Try things out, keep what’s successful and improve what isn’t. Adopting a continually evolving approach that involves making small, but incremental steps, will ensure businesses are supporting mental health and improving workplace wellbeing.

Did you know we were recently recognised by Mind for our commitment to workplace wellbeing? The team at Softwire were presented with a Silver award, showing that our company is making a positive impact within the workforce. Find out more about Mind’s Workplace Wellbeing Index here or listen to our latest podcast on workplace wellbeing.