More than three-quarters (78%) of respondents are strongly committed to creating a workplace culture of health to boost employee engagement and organisational performance, according to research by Buck Consultants at Xerox.

Its Working well: a global survey of health promotion and workplace wellness strategies research, which surveyed more than 1,000 employers in 37 countries, found that 65% of respondents believe that wellbeing programmes are extremely or very important to attract and retain employees.

More than half (52%) of respondents measure the outcomes of their wellbeing programmes, up from 36% in 2012.

Policies related to flexible-working arrangements and paid time off ranked as the number one component of wellbeing programmes globally, with employee assistance programmes ranked at number two, particularly in Australia, Africa, Canada and the US.

Globally, too much stress, too little exercise and a poor diet remained the top wellbeing-related areas of focus for employers. In Asia, Africa and the Middle East, employee safety is the number one concern.

More than a third (43%) of respondents have created a brand identity for their employee wellbeing programme.

Martyn Anwyl, head of health and productivity at Buck Consultants at Xerox, said: “When we began this survey in 2007, employers were focused on basic health promotion activities.

‘Today, our sixth survey shows an evolution in employer thinking to a much more holistic and measurable approach.’

‘Workers’ wellness is now viewed as a state of wellbeing across the spectrum of health, wealth, and career.’

‘Wellness is part of the employee value proposition. Social media, gamification, mobile technology, automated coaching, and personalised communication are all part of the mix.’

By Jennifer Patterson, as published by Employee Benefits on 7th August 2014

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