Winner: Authentic Wellbeing, EMCOR UK
EMCOR UK’s five-year strategic ‘Embedding Wellbeing’ initiative was designed with sustainable behavioural change in mind, something that ‘quick-win’ surface level wellbeing projects find difficult to achieve.
Stress and anxiety were contributing to significant absence from work and poor engagement within the business. Stress-related absenteeism across the 4,400-strong EMCOR UK workforce from June 2014 to May 2016 totalled 7,717 days.
EMCOR UK’s goal was to reach all parts of the organisation, from executive to junior levels, remote workers and employees joining from other organisations – offering wellbeing support initiatives that catered for everyone in the business.
Through this strategy, the business also sought to embed positive wellbeing behaviours across the business, including improved awareness and understanding of wellbeing; improved employee retention; and reduced absenteeism.
In 2016, EMCOR UK set up a health and wellbeing steering group to meet quarterly to act as a forum for employee consultation. The group, which includes individuals from across the workforce, advises on the development and implementation of policies, while also recommending actions to the board.
The strategy was split into three core areas: physical, emotional and financial wellbeing.
Physical wellbeing programmes included research into how indoor environments affect people, a sleep awareness programme and a bike-to-work scheme. Emotional wellbeing programmes included mental health training, employee engagement initiatives and an employee assistance programme that provides third party counselling. Financial wellbeing included debt support counselling, dental insurance, health plans and discount offers.
Many of the initiatives are accessible through FLEX, EMCOR UK’s online benefits portal.
- Turnover rate decreased from 23% to 14.5%; overall employee engagement score rose from 655 to 715, above the industry average of 693.
- Absences due to stress or mental health have fallen by 20%, while the various counselling and support programmes saw significant take up; over a quarter of staff have accessed EMCOR UK’s financial wellbeing support hub and 354 employees have received telephone counselling.
- Average days lost per employee per year at the business is 29, compared to the FM sector average of 38, while overall sickness absence has fallen by 5.7%.