Health in the workplace should be pivotal part of employers’ job

A coalition which consists of the CIPD, MPs, businesses and health experts have called for employers to take a more pivotal role in promoting good physical and mental health in the workplace.

The Working Well Coalition wrote an open letter published in The Times on Friday (26th July 2019) stating employers also have a role in easing modern day workplace challenges.

The letter says how mental health and musculoskeletal conditions are the two biggest causes of workplace absence following minor illnesses, as they lead to 43 million lost working days per year.

As well as, the letter saying four in five UK employees claiming support from their employer could help them recover quicker.

The coalition is being led by John Lewis Partnership (JLP) and also includes the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) and Siemens.

They have also called for the Occupational Health (OH) system to be made more straightforward and more widely available to employees, and for all OH services to be made non-taxable benefits.

Rachel Suff, the CIPD’s senior policy adviser, said:

There’s momentum, but for a lot of organisations – particularly small employers – the resources and know-how aren’t in place to really take health and wellbeing seriously.

Tracey Killen, director of personnel at John Lewis, said:

For business, a healthy, engaged workforce can boost performance and productivity. The report highlights that if employers, health experts and the government all work together, we can achieve great things for the UK economy, businesses and workers.

This open letter follows JLP’s 2019 Working Well Report which showed the total cost of absenteeism and reduced productivity due to mental health and musculoskeletal conditions for UK businesses could rise to £87.8 billion by 2025 – a £14 billion increase from today’s rate of £73.8 billion.

It also said that by investing in early clinical interventions for musculoskeletal and mental health conditions, UK businesses could save £38.1 billion by 2025.

Interested in employee wellbeing? We recommend the Workplace Wellbeing and Stress Forum 2019.





Darius is the editor of HRreview. He has previously worked as a finance reporter for the Daily Express. He studied his journalism masters at Press Association Training and graduated from the University of York with a degree in History.