With lengthy working hours and prolonged commutes, office well being is a vital problem for London’s staff and companies. A key aspiration of Better Health for London was to make work a wholesome place to be and vital progress has been made; since 2012 the variety of working days misplaced attributable to illness absence in London has diminished by 3% from 16.9 million to 13.9 million in 2017.
PHE London’s most up-to-date Employee Health and Wellbeing report outlines a number of the main points in additional element.
What are the dangers of poor office well being in London?
The share of London-based staff who work fewer hours attributable to sickness is above the nationwide common. Along with the upper price of dwelling within the capital, giant numbers of persons are employed within the gig economic system or work lengthy hours, generally with a number of part-time jobs.
These components have an effect on materials wellbeing and on growing stress ranges, which can gasoline unhealthy coping methods equivalent to smoking and extreme alcohol consumption.
And this isn’t simply unhealthy information for workers – the associated fee to the economic system of an unhealthy workforce has been estimated at over £60 billion per 12 months, and a mean London agency of 250 staff loses round £4,800 per week (or round £250,000 a 12 months) attributable to illness absence.
What are the primary well being points going through working Londoners at this time?
Maybe surprisingly, musculoskeletal issues (MSK) present the commonest cause for absence, adopted by minor sicknesses such because the widespread chilly. Along with these two areas, psychological well being issues equivalent to stress, melancholy and anxiousness account for over 7% of working hours lost.
Long run absence follows an identical sample. The vast majority of Londoners on incapacity profit have preventable or treatable situations, with nearly half (47%) accounted for by psychological well being issues, and an extra 15% affected by MSK points.
What can staff do to take care of their well being at work?
PHE’s One You has recommendation on sustaining a balanced diet which might have a optimistic affect on many facets of well being. In addition to serving to to extend resilience to sickness, good vitamin improves psychological wellbeing too.
Extra weight and weight problems are recognized to put undue stress on joints, so consuming healthily may assist to cut back the chance of MSK issues.
With so many individuals working sedentary jobs, it’s extra vital than ever to ensure you get enough exercise. Round a 3rd of adults within the UK are damaging their well being by means of lack of bodily exercise, so take into consideration the way you may incorporate extra motion into your day by day life.
Making certain you get sufficient sleep is one other key technique to take care of your bodily and psychological well being. If you’re battling sleeplessness or insomnia, take a look at our guide to better sleep.
Stress, anxiousness and melancholy shouldn’t be suffered in silence. In London, our free digital psychological well being useful resource ‘Good Thinking’ provides instruments to assist and promote psychological wellbeing.
What can London employers do to make sure their office is wholesome?
Understanding the well being and wellbeing of your employees is essential, for instance it is necessary for employers to assist their employees by making a tradition the place psychological well being and wellbeing are valued.
A workplace health needs assessment is an easy technique to collect nameless details about the well being of your workforce and supplies a baseline of knowledge to trace progress towards. It additionally helps employers perceive the place to organise funding in employees well being and wellbeing.
The London Healthy Workplace Charter, backed by the Mayor of London, supplies clear and straightforward steps for employers to make their workplaces more healthy and happier. You’ll be able to learn case studies of companies who signed as much as the constitution.
PHE has labored intently with Enterprise within the Group to supply a spread of free evidence-based toolkits for employers that are full of recommendation, suggestions and case research, selling easy actions that each enterprise can take whether or not an SME or a multi-national and whether or not what you are promoting operates within the public, voluntary or personal sector.
NICE has additionally issued guidance on easy methods to enhance the well being and wellbeing of staff with a give attention to organisational tradition and the position of line managers.
The office itself generally is a excellent place to share details about easy methods to preserve a wholesome life-style. It’s additionally an atmosphere the place well being and wellbeing initiatives equivalent to smoking cessation clinics may be provided. Within the Metropolis of London, for instance, Business Healthy is working to equip enterprise leaders within the Sq. Mile to enhance the well being and wellbeing of their workforce.
In addition to encouraging finest follow in relation to hygiene, weight-reduction plan and train, and advocating interventions such because the flu vaccine, employers can do quite a bit to create a wholesome atmosphere at work.
Making certain that the office is protected, clear, properly ventilated and an applicable temperature can assist forestall the unfold of minor sicknesses, and offering staff with ergonomic chairs and adjustable displays can assist diminish the chance of MSK issues.
Equally, planning a workspace so that individuals have to maneuver round and work together with one another is one other good technique to promote bodily exercise, which may have an effect not solely on musculoskeletal well being, but additionally on psychological wellbeing.
PHE London will proceed to work to enhance office well being in collaboration with key companions together with native authorities, Enterprise Wholesome, and the GLA. We assist Mayor of London’s Good Working Standard and London Living Wage methods.
All of us can do extra to assist create a more healthy and extra productive office, and the sources signposted are an important place to be taught extra.
Learn extra blogs from the London area on the collection page.