Jamie MacLennan, Managing Director Australia
Employee wellness today is more than a catchphrase. Indeed, Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace analysis highlights its importance. Globally, close to 85 percent of adults are actively disengaged or not engaged, with Asia Pacific’s level of employee engagement at only six percent. The survey also indicates that employees who score high on the five elements of personal well-being – physical, social, financial, community, and virtuous, are more healthy, productive, and adapt to change quickly. Which is why, organizations need to address the challenge of well-being of their employees, the fundamental block of an engaged, productive organization.
Organizations can take advantage of LifeWorks by Morneau Shepell, which is positioned uniquely to address a broad range of well-being factors through their unified total well-being platform that enables the workforce to stay happy, healthy, and productive. “Your employees’ well-being influences your organization and business performance,” says Jamie MacLennan, Managing Director Australia of LifeWorks by Morneau Shepell. “Behind an engaged and productive organization lies a workforce whose health and well-being has been responsibly taken care of.”
Traditionally, addressing employee well-being is accomplished through engagement activities such as employee assistance programs or EAPs as they are widely known. While EAPs provide services that are essential and useful to employees, a major downside to these programs is their reactive approach toward workplace challenges. This results in the EAP’s utilization of less than 10 percent of the employees in an organization, crippling the overall goal of reaching out to the entire workforce. Even as more additional individual services, which are valuable by themselves, are introduced, collectively, their outcome proves to be ineffective for organizations. This is because these programs lack strategic cohesion as they follow a cookie-cutter approach and are not tailored to individual requirements. LifeWorks by Morneau Shepell follows a distinctive approach of empowering employees with the flexibility to customize the mobile-first platform on the basis of their individual well-being journey.
To tackle the broader definition of well-being, our platform brings together digital capability and expertise along with experienced clinical resources, research and delivery capacities under the same roof
The platform drives increased participation from the employees as it focuses on their discrete interests and goals rather than the standardized employee engagement formats.
LifeWorks by Morneau Shepell focuses on the four main pillars of an employee’s well-being – mental, physical, social, and financial. LifeWorks is differentiated in the market as it combines the best of both worlds—the clinical heritage of Morneau Shepell that goes back 50 years together with the digital employee engagement technology of LifeWorks. “To tackle the broader definition of well-being, our platform brings together digital capability and expertise along with experienced clinical resources, research and delivery capacities under the same roof,” points out MacLennan.
Riding the Well-Being Bandwagon
The well-being journey commences when employees of a client organization access the platform by downloading the application offered by LifeWorks by Morneau Shepell on their devices. While the LifeWorks application is a common platform for a company, individual employees create a personalised account tailored to support their personal well-being.
The platform offers four features, which revolve around an employee’s mental health and well-being, physical health, financial advice, and social engagement. Organizations can utilize the social engagement feature as a community platform to receive and send out communication. Likewise, employees can make use of the feature for self-recognition, to appreciate their peers, post information, or even share experiences. By building communities within the platform, LifeWorks by Morneau Shepell drives consistent participation amongst the employees and also functions as a gamification tool with fitness challenges and other activities to motivate teams to be healthy and happy.
The robust platform comprises a multitude of engagement mechanisms, which include assessment tools, research, training material, and wellness content aimed at helping employees improve their mental health. Employees can go through the content, get support, or even connect to call centres 24/7 and arrange for clinical or individual counseling sessions, which can be delivered through an array of methods ranging from telephonic or face-to-face.
Changing the Face of Employee Well-being
With client testimonials from numerous happy and satisfied customers, LifeWorks by Morneau Shepell has proven that they can walk the talk. MacLennan quotes the senior vice president of human resources of a Canadian multinational organization, “Focusing on the mental, the physical and financial health of our employees has demonstrably improved the well-being of our EAP users. Absenteeism is down by 52 percent, and more than 75 percent of our EAP users report high resilience to job stresses. More importantly, we see an increase in our participation, meaning, improved health, well-being, and productivity for more of our people.”
However, they do not plan to rest on their laurels. According to MacLennan, the real challenge lies in reaching out to people, educating them on the importance of well-being, and continually developing and enhancing the platform from a user perspective to help them in their well-being journey. Working toward this goal, the team is launching the total well-being index or TWI where individuals as well as organizations can assess their well-being through statistical outcomes from online surveys. This index provides a measurement of well-being and acts as a pulse check for an individual and the organization. Also recently launched are CARENow CBT modules, which allow users the flexibility to choose their own path when it comes to care and to participate in a range of programs. “The drive for us is to further enhance our offering by focusing on the four pillars – physical, social, mental, and financial. The goal is to make it more relevant and accessible to people in order to improve their individual well-being and collectively bring better outcomes for the organization,” MacLennan concludes.