Have you ever wondered if it’s possible to reduce the amount of sick leave that employees take? Now here’s a question that may excite even the stodgiest of office managers. According to research done by PwC, UK workers take almost twice as many sick days than those in the US. This places a heavy burden on British businesses. When employees take off sick regularly, companies make significantly losses in revenue. It’s no small wonder that managers are looking for ways to prevent employees from needing sick leave.
While there is no way of watching someone 24/7 or following them with a bottle of disinfectant spray and a surgical mask, there are ways to provide a more sanitary workplace and encouraging healthy habits. These might not keep all employees from getting sick, but it will reduce the chances of multiple staff members being absent due to flu.
Below are three factors that play a significant part in office wellbeing:
While symptoms might not show, employees may already be highly infectious. To prevent germs from spreading, consider using anti-bacterial air fresheners in the office. Also replace hand wash with anti-bacterial options or install hand sanitizer dispensers. Encourage staff to wash their hands regularly and not to share water bottles, glasses, cups etc.
Healthy lifestyle habits should be encouraged in the workplace. Invest in a water cooler to ensure all staff members are well hydrated, provide employees with a healthy breakfast or lunch as often as possible and offer them free, optional flu vaccinations. Some companies even have gym memberships as a benefit, but this is not a requirement unless your budget allows.
It’s important to remember that staff members will get sick despite efforts to stay healthy. It is better to let them stay home and possibly work from home, should they want to, than let them infect everyone at the office.
If your staff are physically uncomfortable, they’re at risk of some serious health issues. For instance, Edna from accounting might be off-sick because of that incessant back problem she’s been complaining about. More often than not, it’s a result of her chair that doesn’t provide enough back support.
You should consider providing your employees with ergonomic chairs and desks for optimal comfort. Nothing is more debilitating than pain shooting up your back because you have to reach up to your desk or tilt your head to see your screen.
Disclaimer: This advice is in no way intended to cure any medical condition or illness. However, you are now equipped with the knowledge to improve health conditions at the office and prevent multiple employees from taking sick leave.