In order to help uphold workplace culture as lockdown ends, employers are offering more flexibility, and improving wellbeing programmes according to new research by messaging service Slack.
A company that focuses on wellbeing has also become more important to employees looking for new roles.
A quarter (25%) of UK workers said they are more attracted to companies that actively fight burnout by being proactive about the mental health and wellness of their people.
Rob Archer, founder of The Career Psychologist, said employers prioritising wellbeing is important as many people have experienced higher levels of stress and worry in 2020 and 2021.
Speaking to HR magazine he said: “We know that overall rates of anxiety and depression have risen sharply in the UK, due to many factors including the isolating effects of lockdown and people feeling concerned about the health of themselves, family, friends and colleagues.
“Many of those working from home are putting in longer hours and spending more time in back-to-back video calls every day.”
Archer said this, combined with a lack of variety, has meant that we have seen higher levels of burnout emerging.
“As we return to a changed world of work, employers will need to stay focused on championing wellbeing, managing workload and giving people as much control over their days as they can,” he explained.
While improvements have been made on work culture, Nadia Rawlinson, chief people officer at Slack, thinks more still needs to be done.
A third (32%) of UK workers admitted to wanting a more mindful culture with set work boundaries.
Rawlinson said companies have a unique opportunity to seize this moment of change by improving work culture and wellbeing. She told HR magazine: “This is more important than ever, as an employee who is cared for and supported will be inspired to do their best work.
“Companies that prioritise culture will also have a competitive advantage and will help level the playing field, democratise access to information, remove the barriers of office hierarchies, where it’s no longer about how many seats are in a meeting room or proximity to a boss.”
To ensure work culture improvements and wellbeing continue to be prioritised, Rawlinson said businesses should shift their thinking to digital-first.
She said: “Businesses can do this by, one, providing employees with tools that keep them connected and productive wherever they are and when they want to work.
“And two, shifting culture through the way teams are managed and success is measured, for instance, by focusing on results rather than time spent working.”
Why wellbeing is important after the pandemic: