The biggest sporting event of the year is kicking off on the 27 July, and organisations have been busy making sure that sufficient processes and procedures are in place so that business can carry on as normal.

But it should not stop there. As the Olympics kick off, HR professionals have a huge opportunity to make their mark and use this as a way to drive change and demonstrate how investing in the health and wellbeing of staff can  improve business performance. From a business and individual perspective, the timing is perfect to push the importance of health, energy and performance. Here are some simple steps to help you implement a wellbeing programme that will  improve the performance of your business:

Set clear objectives

For your wellbeing programme to be a success there is a real need to set clear objectives. New school organisations like eBay and Karmarama get this, and as a result they are reaping the rewards associated with a productive and healthy workforce. New school organisations look at their overarching business strategy and work with their wellbeing provider to develop a programme of activities that will support objectives of reducing sickness absence, improving performance, increasing employee engagement or reducing reactive healthcare costs.

Do your research

Employee wellbeing has become much more topical over the last year, and there are lots of organisations offering different wellbeing-related services now. To maximise the impact of these services and ensure they deliver real return on investment, it makes good business sense to invest time in the buying process to ensure you partner with the right experts. Here are some tips to help you select your partner:

1. Share your objectives

Every business is different, so the wellbeing programme should be tailored to your needs. It is not something that can be bought off the shelf. By being honest in terms of where your business is at and what you want to achieve, you are much more likely to get a wellbeing programme that will deliver a real return on investment.

2. Expertise

Ask your provider to talk you through their approach and don’t be afraid to ask for references. Most providers will be happy to highlight who they work with.

3. Create a strategy

There are still some organisations that treat employee wellbeing as a tick box exercise. But holding a one-off wellbeing workshop, providing a gym membership or paying for an employee assistance programme (EAP), doesn’t mean you’ve covered employee wellbeing – far from it. Implementing healthy habits that will really help improve business performance takes time. Once you have set your objectives, work with your wellbeing provider to really assess what will work for your organisation and employees. Work with them to create a clear strategy and programme of activities for the year that will help you improve business performance.

4. Form a partnership

Work in partnership with your provider. Some leaders still need convincing about the benefits of employee wellbeing activities, so get your partner to demonstrate return on investment and help you present the business case to your senior team. This takes some of the pressure off you and ensures your provider is committed to delivering results.

5. Build the business case

When developing a strategy to improve employee wellbeing, you will need to sell the business case to your chief executive, finance director and board. It’s important to consider current priorities or key focus areas for your audience, and focus attention on these.  Click here to find out how you can put a price on wellbeing. In developing your business case, you will also need to address some of the following:

  • What are the key drivers for focusing on employee wellbeing?
  • Who do you need to get buy-in from?
  • What are you trying to achieve?
  •  How much will this cost? What is the cost-benefit analysis?

6. Regular reviews

Work with your employee wellbeing partner to regularly review activities. Sometimes change within the organisation will have an impact on wellbeing and your provider needs to be close enough to your organisation to understand what is happening so that they can develop solutions.

Measure the impact

The success of a wellbeing programme depends on clear objectives and rigorous measurement. It is important to get the processes and systems in place as soon as possible so you can measure the impact of your wellbeing programme. This will help you demonstrate to your CEO and board/management team the real return on investment that you are delivering.

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Written by Oliver Gray, managing director, energiseYou

Oliver Gray, is managing director and founder of energiseYou, one of the UK’s leading experts in health, energy, happiness and performance:

He has coached thousands of senior executives and their teams on how to make simple changes to boost their health, energy, happiness and performance, both inside and outside work.

Oliver believes health, energy & performance should be kept simple, “Essentially living a healthy energised life is about creating healthy habits, both inside and outside of work. If you can make the healthy choices 80% of the time, you can then leave 20% of the time to be flexible with life.”

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