“A business’s most valuable asset is, and will always be, the dedicated staff that devote themselves to delivering the work of the organisation. Healthy and fit staff are essential to ensuring a company remains efficient and profitable’
The UK has an ageing population – as a result of increased life expectancy and low birth rates – having more people in work is important for the future of the national economy. And with fewer young people entering employment, there will be an increasing need for employers to attract and retain employees. Although the skills gap may be addressed to some extent, the future workforce is likely to have a higher proportion of older employees and employees with disabilities and long-term health conditions.
If the government, healthcare services, other professionals, employers and employees don’t work together to promote the health and wellbeing of individuals, issues such as obesity, alcohol and drug abuse and mental ill health will have a negative impact on the workplace.
Wellness is important for employers, as it is related to economic capacity. It is important in an economic recession for employees to be resilient in order to maximise their capability and therefore their contribution to the economic growth and stability of the organisation. If employers focus only on illness or absence management, they will only be managing cases of illness. Instead, they need to make the connection between an effective wellbeing programme and the health of their business.
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There is also a direct financial benefit of offering health checks for employees because health checks are classed as a capital allowance as part of capital expenditure. This means an employer can offset the cost of health checks against tax while employees do not have to pay tax either as health checks are a non-chargeable benefit and therefore exempt.