Maintaining a healthy workforce can not only boost productivity and improve your company's ability to provide a seamless service, it could also help minimise employee downtime and all the costs involved with absenteeism.
As a country, more than 88 million days are lost per year due to sick and carers leave, according to figures collated by Direct Health Solutions. The financial repercussions of this absenteeism? Every year, this lost time costs the economy a cool $27.5 billion, or $2,741 per employee.
Organisations across many industries are implementing various solutions to help reduce absenteeism. Could investing in a cloud-based phone system and rolling out a work from home (WFH) policy play a role in fostering a healthier workforce? Let's take a look at few of the ways a flexible working arrangement could improve employee wellbeing:
1. Reduce stress
According to the Australian Psychological Society, almost 1 in 2 (46 per cent) Australians cite their workplace as a significant source of stress. This anxiety can lead to a range of health problems further down the track, potentially resulting in prolonged periods of absenteeism that can further impact the business.
Allowing staff members to WFH via a hosted communications solution can go a long way towards helping eliminate this concern. With the freedom to customise their own personal space, your employees will be able to create a peaceful, stress-free environment that's tailored specifically towards their needs.
2. More time for exercise
Introducing a WFH policy removes the need for lengthy commutes, which in turn frees up a lot of spare time for your employees. While some workers will admittedly use this extra time to sleep in, research suggests that the majority of people will be more productive and use the extra hours to workout and improve their overall wellbeing.
For example, FlexJobs found that more than half (52 per cent) of people who want flexible working arrangement cite health and exercise as a key factor. Companies that are able to accommodate these employees may enjoy a more focussed and productive workforce.
3. Reduce blood pressure
For employees, the key advantage to operating from home is the greater control they have over their work life. Reuters noted that this level of flexibility could be linked to a range of health benefits including reducing blood pressure. High blood pressure is forecasted to affect 1.6 billion people globally, according to the High Blood Pressure Research Council of Australia, and is a key risk factor for strokes and heart attacks.
Improving your workforce's health and wellbeing won't happen overnight, but by allowing employees to use a cloud-based VoIP phone system to work from home, you'll be able to make tangible changes in the here and now.