The Rise of Occupational Health – Workplace Wellbeing

The Missing Link in Workplace Wellbeing

The recent move by the UK government to establish an expert ‘task and finish’ group led by Dame Carol Black, to develop a “voluntary minimum framework for quality Occupational Health (OH) provision”, (DWP, 2024) marks a significant stride towards recognising the essential and preventative role that OH can play in enhancing employee wellbeing and productivity.

The task force’s objective is to provide a scaffold that businesses can adopt to promote health at work, aiming to bridge the gap in OH services across different sectors. This initiative could potentially revolutionise workplace environments by integrating preventative health & risk management measures, thus ensuring a healthier, more productive workforce.

But why is this shift so pivotal? Research from the UK Government (2023) highlights a stark reality: long-term sickness is now the leading cause of economic inactivity among working-age individuals. Such absenteeism not only strains businesses but also impacts the broader economy. Employers providing effective OH services report better employee retention, quicker returns to work post-illness and improved business productivity, indicating a clear return on investment in employee health programmes. (Society of Occupational Medicine, 2017)

Despite the benefits, only 45% of workers in Great Britain currently have access to OH services. This gap is more pronounced in small businesses, where only 18% offer such services, compared to 92% of large employers. (Department for Work & Pensions, 2023) The disparity underscores a pressing need for more inclusive health support mechanisms that cater to businesses of all sizes and employees with diverse health needs.

Stay one step ahead with zeno, health & wellbeing experts that can seamlessly integrate a variety of OH services into workplace wellbeing programmes. Through our diverse range of zeno partnerships, we offer on-site blood testing across 20 categories, DSE assessments and ergonomic specialist solutions, and on-site chair massage services designed to address specific health concerns and prevent long-term issues. Moreover, initiatives like Mental Health First Aid England’s online & face-to-face essential training and our Bio Age Health Kiosks empower businesses to foster a healthier workplace culture.

The No White Flag motivational programme by Jamie Peacock MBE further exemplifies how leveraging personal experiences and elite sports strategies can cultivate resilience and mental toughness within teams, thus enhancing overall workplace morale and performance.

Get in contact to find out more about zeno’s comprehensive range of services.

What does this mean for employers? The rising trend of occupational health services signifies a crucial evolution in workplace dynamics. To stay competitive and maintain a healthy workforce, adapting to these changes is not just beneficial but necessary. Businesses will need to embrace these innovative OH solutions to not only improve their productivity but also to contribute positively to the overall wellbeing of their employees.

In conclusion, as occupational health gains prominence, the collaboration between public initiatives and private sector services like zeno could well be the missing link that redefines workplace wellbeing. This integrated approach promises not only a healthier workforce but also a more resilient and productive business landscape, paving the way for a sustainable future in occupational health management.

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