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A recent survey by SimplyHealth and the CIPD found that absence rates across the UK are on the rise again and there has been a particular increase in the number of mental health related illness’s. It has also been reported that presenteesim is having an impact on productivity as employees are venturing into work ill.
This conference featured insights and case studies from leading employers who shared their learning’s from recent health initiatives. The event addressed
- how to support employees suffering from mental ill health
- how to build resilience amongst employees
- how to build an evidence based business case to implement preventative wellbeing strategies.
Ella Weston, Health and Wellbeing Manager, Arqiva
Ella Weston is the current health and wellbeing manager for Arqiva, a communications infrastructure and media services company, operating at the heart of the broadcast, satellite and mobile communications markets. The Arqiva employee wellbeing programme, “Be Healthy”, is focused around four key areas, active line managers, the work environment, employee support and employee ownership.
Prior to joining Arqiva in June 2013, Ella spent four years working at BlackBerry (formerly RIM) as the health and wellbeing specialist for their Europe, Middle East and Africa region.
Ella’s interest in employee wellbeing stems from a degree in Ergonomics from Loughborough University followed by two years focusing on office ergonomics working within the WorkRite division of Posturite.
Susannah Robertson-Hart, Mental Health Lead, BBC
Susannah is an Occupational Psychologist and in the last ten years has consulted to organisations on workplace stress, mental health and wellbeing, engagement and resilience. She has also managed a national vocational rehabilitation service supporting clients to return to work following health related absence. Susannah is now the BBC’s lead on mental health and is responsible for developing and implementing the BBC’s strategy on mental health and wellbeing.
Helen Knight, National Wellbeing Manager, British Gas
In 2011, Helen Knight joined British Gas as their national wellbeing manager. Since then she has worked to coordinate activities and gain widespread support for a series of activities that form part of an integrated resilience programme. Helen has had many years of experience working within the wellbeing industry, having previously introduced and developed a high-energy wellbeing programme for Amey, a large service and facilities provider. Before that she was a Wellbeing Consultant for The Validium Group, working closely with a wide range of clients.
Nicola Oliver, IPS Coordinator, Centre for Mental Health
Nicola was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder following work related stress and a mental breakdown in 2007. Nicola gives an honest account of her decline into mental illness, her dismissal by her employer and how she manages her condition within the workplace.
Previously a management consultant she now works at the Centre for Mental Health helping healthcare set up employment services to support people with severe mental illness to find or return to sustainable competitive employment. She is also currently writing her PhD research proposal which investigates the links between the immune system, mental illness and nutritional therapy.
Andrea Broughton, Principal Researcher, IES
Andrea Broughton is a principal research fellow at the Institute for Employment Studies (IES), where she has worked since 2006. She has a degree in modern languages and a Masters in International Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management. She has more than 20 years of experience of research and writing in the areas of employment relations, working conditions and industrial relations, specialising in international comparative research.
Before joining IES, Andrea edited the journal European Industrial Relations Review. She has wide experience of managing international projects and working in international teams, working for clients such as the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, the European Commission, the European Parliament and the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work.
Andrea’s specific areas of interest include workplace-level industrial relations, social dialogue, restructuring and change management, and employee involvement. In the area of flexible working, she is a member of the project team that is currently working on the fourth work-life balance employers survey for BIS. She has also carried out a range of European comparative projects on issues related to work-life balance, flexible working and atypical forms of work.
Ann McCracken, Vice President, International stress Management Association
Ann McCracken is a Director of AMC2 and the vice president of the International Management Association (ISMA UK) – the professional body for stress management Practitioners.
She specialises in developing a positive and resilient working culture in organisations by introducing effective strategies in performance and wellbeing at all levels. The effectiveness of such a positive working culture is measured and assessed using AMC2 Corporate Diagnostic innovative surveys which include measurement of psychosocial factors, stress and wellbeing. Having initially trained as a scientist, she carried out research with DEFRA and consultancy in the NHS.
She spent 10 years in Education before retraining as a stress management practitioner in 1996. She is the author of Stress Gremlins©, regularly writes/broadcasts and is an external lecturer at Westminster University. She is also a Key Note/Motivational speaker/Conference Chair.
John Hamilton, Head of Safety, Health and Wellbeing, Leeds Metropolitan University
John Hamilton is the head of safety, health and wellbeing at Leeds Metropolitan University. John is a chartered safety and health practitioner whose career started in property management that naturally lead to the field of health and safety. His expertise in the management of work-related stress developed as head of health and safety at a UK bank, and has lead him to extensive research and practitioner work in this area. In 2010 he wrote a free guide for employers’ legal duties regarding work-related stress that was jointly published by CIPD, HSE and Acas. John’s recent work has centred on the identification, prevention and management of burnout particularly in academic staff.
Whilst at Leeds Metropolitan John has lead the team responsible for the implementation of a Wellbeing Excellence programme for staff and students that has combined resources and expertise from across the institution in development wellbeing tools and interventions. This programme has achieved recognition in a number of national awards including the overall winner of the 2010 Occupational Health Awards.
John is a visiting lecturer at a number of academic institutions and maintains a regular blog at jehealth.org.
Sally Evans, Senior Manager – Diversity & Inclusion and Employee Wellbeing, PWC
Sally is a senior manager in the diversity & inclusion and employee wellbeing team at PwC. She leads the UK firm’s wellbeing approach, which won the Sunday Times Best Companies wellbeing award in 2013 and 2014. Her current focus is building resilience and engagement for sustained performance
Claire Forty, Occupational Health Nurse Manager, RWEnpower
Claire qualified at the Royal Masonic and Roehampton School of Nursing “too many years ago to remember.” She has worked in Occupational Health & Wellbeing for the past 21 years and joined RWEnpower from the nuclear industry 16 years ago. With responsibility for the company’s 12 OH Nurses, team of administrators and her own clinical workload, Claire is committed to delivering a first class OH&W service to all employees.
Howard Hughes, Head of Employer Marketing, SimplyHealth
Howard has worked in the health insurance industry for over 27 years with 15 years in marketing. Howard has a BA (Hons) in History and Politics and MBA. As head of employer marketing at Simplyhealth, Howard’s role involves helping companies understand the broad range of employee benefits and how they add value to the business. Howard is a family man.
He has three children and a dog called Poppy. Howard also follows Newport Gwent Dragons and is a fluent Welsh speaker.
Linda Smith, HR Director, UNUM
Linda has gained significant global HR experience working within the investment banking, legal and consulting sectors. She has a Masters in Human Resources and is a Fellow of the CIPD. Her experience has focussed on designing and implementing HR strategies to lead HR teams and organisations through business, structural and cultural change, working for companies such as HSBC and Nabarro Nathanson.
Linda joined Unum in early 2012 as the UK human resources director where she plays a leading role in designing and implementing the HR Strategy, aligning it to the evolving business needs. She works closely with her global colleagues to develop harmonised strategies to improve the ease of developing and sharing talent across the global organisation. She supports the business development strategy at UNUM, identifying ways to engage with HR directors and the wider HR community to discuss the topic of income protection and promote the benefits to employers and employees.
The “Health @ Work Summit 2014″ conference documentation includes the following sessions:
Chair’s opening remarks
Ann McCracken, Vice President
Why do wellbeing at all?
Linda Smith, HR Director
Health and work: designing and delivering the Health and Work Service
1. Design of the Service
Adam Bailey, Policy Lead for Health and Work Service, Health and Wellbeing
The Ageing Population: The myths and the facts
Howard Hughes, Head of Employer Marketing
Educating employees on healthy lifestyles and minimising cardiovascular risk
Helen Knight, National Wellbeing Manager
Developing a mental health strategy
Susannah Robertson-Hart, Mental Health Lead
What is reasonable?
John Hamilton, Head of Safety, Health and Wellbeing
Supporting return to work and getting people back faster
Claire Forty, Occupational Health Nurse Manager
Engaging emplyees through wellbeing
Ella Weston, Health and Wellbeing Manager
Building resilience for sustained performance
Sally Evans, Senior Manager – Diversity & Inclusion and Employee Wellbeing
A personal Story – Working with a severe mental illness
Nicola Oliver, IPS Coordinator
Work life balance; examining the impact on wellbeing and organisational effectiveness
Andrea Broughton, Principal Researcher
Unum has been providing employee insurance benefits in the UK for 40 years, offering policies to employers of all sizes, including 37 of the FTSE100. In particular we specialise in Group Income Protection. This provides staff with a back-up plan if they’re unable to work due to long-term illness or injury, by paying a proportion of their salary until they either get better and return to work, or reach retirement.
This specialisation in sickness absence means we have extensive expertise in the understanding and management of – and support for – a wide range of conditions that employees may face, from mental health and stress-related conditions, to musculoskeletal; from accidents and injuries, to cancer. We were the first insurer to develop an in-house Vocational Rehabilitation team, and this is a core part of the approach we take to managing and supporting those who are off work. Their occupational therapy, occupational health and vocational rehabilitation expertise extends beyond intervention when someone’s fallen sick, and into preventative training for HR and line management that integrates into the wellness programmes that many of our clients have, and looks to promote resilience alongside physical health.
In 2012, we began a partnership with the charity Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres, to raise the issue of cancer in the workplace. Through a series of free workshops, held at Maggie’s centres around the country, we’re looking to promote HR and line management awareness and capabilities, for working with, supporting and managing people with cancer. This partnership won the Rehabilitation First Initiative of the Year Award in September 2013.
In a world where so many people can’t be bothered, we’re proud to be the healthcare company that can. We believe in helping people access affordable healthcare and delivering exceptional personal customer service.
We help two million individuals look after their health, and 11,000 companies choose us as their healthcare provider. You may have known us as HSA, BCWA, HealthSure, LHF, Totally Active, Remedi or Medisure. Our name has changed, but what’s not altered is our award winning commitment to do the right thing by our customers.
Medgate UK provide a wealth of experience within the Occupational Health marketplace and are constantly on the forefront of new Occupational health products, innovations and design. Our solutions help to deliver efficiencies, streamlining and ultimate cost savings to ensure maximum benefit for you and your clients.
Cohort, The Occupational Health system of choice, empowers you to be proactive and assists with the streamlining and improvement of the services you provide for your staff and clients. With a core system which efficiently manages all daily activities, from pre-placement, management referrals, sickness absence and diary management through to the health, wellbeing and maintenance of your staff and clients.
Innovative modules can also be purchased to complement and enhance the core system functionality from SMS texting through to Online Management Referrals and Online Pre-Placement.
Transport for London
Transport for London – Cycling Workplaces Scheme
We are responsible for the day-to-day operation of the Capital’s public transport network, managing London’s main roads and the planning and building of new infrastructure.
Our cycling workplaces scheme offers employers free support and services to help promote cycling in your workplace.
By encouraging your employees to cycle more, you can save money, have happier, healthier employees and help improve your local environment. If you have five or more employees, you could benefit from free products and services, including:
– Cycle parking – a wide range of cycle parking facilities are on offer to suit the space you have available
– Cycle security – employees can have their bikes security marked and registered, to aid recovery in the event of theft
– ‘London by Bike’ seminar – useful information for cycling in London, including safety tips and myth-busting
– Commuter cycle skills sessions – on-bike urban cycling skills ranging from beginner to experienced cyclists delivered in groups or one-to-one
– Ongoing advice and support – guidance is available, including an online toolkit of resources, to help you promote cycling to employees in your workplace
To find out more visit tfl.gov.uk/cyclingworkplaces
Workplace healthcare & wellbeing has certainly moved forward in the last ten years, quite possibly the word ‘wellbeing’ would not have even been used, but is now regularly applied in the corporate world when referring to the physical & mental state of your workforce.
Keeping your staff healthy typically involved occupational health, physio and compliance with health & safety, perhaps with some health perks within your employee benefit packages. These remain important elements, however…
There is a bigger picture.
Increasingly companies are realising that the ongoing wellbeing of their people is paramount.
Historically treatment has been reactive, this has now been allied with a proactive approach, the philosophy ‘prevention is better than cure’ has been adopted by organisations that want to keep their people fit, active and productive.