The CIPD is embarking on a long-term project on employee health and well-being. While great strides have been made in workplace health and well-being in recent years, there is still a worrying implementation gap; for example, our 2015 Absence Management Survey, in partnership with Simplyhealth, revealed that just 8% of workplaces have in place a standalone health and well-being strategy. This finding says a lot about how most employers continue to view employee well-being – not as a strategic priority and a potential source of future competitive advantage but as an ‘add on’ or ‘nice-to-have’ activity.
But if we set a more aspirational agenda for organisations, the impact for individuals and business could be much greater. Health and well-being is not just about one-off activities, it’s about aspiring to position employee well-being as a continuous thread that runs through the organisation. We believe that a holistic approach to well-being, that pays equal attention to the physical, mental and social factors shaping people’s experience at work, is fundamental to achieving better work and working lives. HR and business leaders have a vital part to play in closing the well-being gap if people, organisations and society are to fully realise the benefits of a healthy working-age population. The ageing workforce and poor productivity performance are just two factors pointing to the urgent need for investment in organisational health and well-being.Our well-being programme will build on the considerable research and guidance that the CIPD and others have already published in this area, and we look forward to collaborating with our members on this important work. You can contribute to the debate on social media on #wellbeing16, look out for our twitter chat, press release and new report launch - visit our wellbeing hub.
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