Almost half of employers haven’t asked employees how they’re doing, survey finds

A social media poll by Health Shield friendly society* reveals that many employers are still failing to keep on top of employee wellbeing as the UK goes in and out of lockdowns. The results also suggest that employee awareness and understanding of benefits and wellbeing services is low. Yet, when employees are aware of the support available via their employer it seems valued.

The poll found:

• 48% of employees said their employer hasn’t gained their views on their health, wealth, happiness and/or any concerns.
• 16.5% of those employers that do ask about employee wellbeing only do it via a once-a-year survey.
• 55% said they’re not fully aware of the employee benefit and wellbeing services to which they’re entitled via their employer.
• Of those that were aware of the support available (30%), over half (55%) said they would miss these benefits and services if they were gone.

These results come at a time when employee wellbeing is cited as a top leadership priority.** And, in line with this, almost two thirds (61%) of employers think that communication of benefits and wellbeing programmes will be a top priority this year. In particular with relation to Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs), online mental health services and wellbeing apps.***

Jennie Doyle, Head of Marketing at Health Shield, commented: “These results suggest that many employers are still taking a traditional one-size-fits-all, top down and disjointed approach to benefit and wellbeing programme communication, if they’re communicating at all. Considering wellbeing provides the foundation for employee engagement, this hit and miss approach is a concern, especially during the current economic downturn.

“It’s vital that employers gather the employee insights they need – through actually talking to employees via various means, from line manager meetings through to regular physical, mental and financial wellbeing assessments available via various platforms. Through such insights, employers can better tailor integrated care pathways. They can also communicate in such a way that helps individuals understand relevance. It’s this that will ensure usage and value; in turn bringing advantages to people and to business.”

White Paper – free download
To help employers understand how to gain the insights needed to better target communication – with a specific focus on the current landscape with many working from home or furloughed – Health Shield has published a White Paper entitled How to engage your disparate workforce: 3 ways HR Managers can improve benefit and wellbeing communication.

It takes an independent problem / solution approach, with top tips focused on making better use of existing resources, together with a worked example. To download the White Paper, please click here


*Health Shield, Social Media Poll, carried out across three dates in September 2020, and with an average response rate of 3,528 individuals per question
**PwC CEO Panel Survey 2020 – UK Findings, Aug 2020 This survey found that 9 in 10 CEOs believe wellbeing initiatives are key to driving long-term changes to their business model.
***Willis Towers Watson Employer Study, May 2020