Majority of UK employers measure impact of supporting employee health and wellbeing

Over three-quarters (76%) of employers now evaluate the effects of their health and wellbeing support for staff, a study by GRiD, the group risk sector's industry body, has found.

This marks a notable rise from the 51% who measured this impact in 2023, highlighting an increasing awareness among employers of the benefits to both their workforce and their business from providing health and wellbeing support.

GRiD further points out that assessing these impacts offers a valuable opportunity to refine and enhance health and wellbeing benefits for better results. Without this evaluation, it's challenging to identify any improvements or declines in employee health and wellbeing.

Is There a Business Benefit to Support?

Equally important is the discovery that nearly all (99%) employers who conduct these assessments believe that supporting their employees' health and wellbeing positively affects their business as well.

Among these employers:

  • 43% noted a positive return on investment (ROI)/financial benefit to the business from health and wellbeing initiatives.
  • An equal 43% observed an increase in productivity.
  • 42% felt that such support fosters loyalty and engagement among employees.
  • 42% mentioned that integrating health and wellbeing support is essential to their company ethos and achieving business goals.
  • 41% identified it as a distinguishing feature against competitors, aiding in recruitment and retention.
  • 39% revealed that comprehensive health and wellbeing support helps manage absences, reducing both frequency and duration, thus facilitating a faster return to work.

Businesses recognise the substantial benefits of supporting employee health and wellbeing across various aspects, such as enhanced ROI and productivity. These benefits are clear to HR professionals, who also value the intangible gains, like a loyal workforce and reduced staff turnover.

Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for GRiD, said: “Businesses that are not measuring the impact of supporting the health and wellbeing of their staff are now in the minority and that could mean they may struggle to keep up with their competitors. Measuring this impact is of course about improving the health and wellbeing of each individual member of staff but there are real commercial differentiators too, and it’s great to see so many companies recognise this.”

Key challenges in supporting the health and wellbeing of staff

Despite HR professionals reporting the numerous business benefits of supporting the health and wellbeing of staff, when it comes to implementing it, 38% say that they still face affordability challenges in competing with budgets for other business needs, and nearly a third (31%) say they struggle with getting buy-in from the business that such support is necessary.

Building the business case to support staff requires both quantitative and qualitative data. Measuring the impact of existing support is therefore vital in future-proofing budget and resources.

Moxham concluded: “Our own group risk industry data shows compelling evidence that health and wellbeing support for staff is crucial to the health and wellbeing of businesses too.

“Support that offers a real and tangible difference to the physical, mental and financial wellbeing of employees, gives the sponsoring employer a huge competitive advantage on many fronts as found in our research. But offering it without measuring it makes it difficult for the business or the HR team to learn, to improve and to stay ahead.”