Workplace Health and Wellbeing - Don't Forget The Bosses!

An important reminder from Kevin O’Leary our GM: 
Workplace Health continues to be a very hot topic at the moment as we all become increasingly aware of the importance of our physical and mental wellbeing. There is an ever-growing demand to look after staff in the workplace with the introduction of initiatives to support their health and wellbeing. The key message here to our business owners and property owners is, don’t forget to look after yourselves! I would encourage you all to ensure that you look after your own health and wellbeing too, walking the talk in this instance not only sets a great example for others to follow, but is also hugely beneficial to you as an individual.  

The recent announcements regarding the increase in the number of suicides in New Zealand in the year to June 30, which saw 685 people take their own lives - 17 more than the previous year, has prompted action. The Government now says it wants to "enhance prevention information, guidance and resources" to bring down the suicide rate and one part of the plan to reduce suicides in New Zealand focuses on "promoting wellbeing". When you are promoting the wellbeing of your staff, don’t forget to include yourself. 
The following information highlights the challenges that businesses face in relation to workplace health and the associated costs, which are considerable. Improving the health and wellbeing of everyone in a workplace should reduce these challenges and the impact on businesses. 
The big picture of workplace health: 

  • In 2018 NZ lost 7.4 million working days and $1.79bn due to absence, up on 2016.
  • Close to half of New Zealand businesses (47.5 per cent) have five days per year (rolled over if unused) as their most common approach to sick leave entitlements.
  • Absent employees typically cost their employer between $600 and $1,000 a year.
  • The average rate of absence in 2018 was 4.7 days per employee. This compares with 4.4 days in 2016, 4.7 days in 2014 and 4.5 days in 2012.
  • On average, businesses spend around $1,500 per staff member annually on benefits to improve wellbeing.
  • A net 23.5 per cent of businesses surveyed reported an increase in general employee stress and anxiety, compared with 2016 data.
  • 35 per cent of staff are likely to turn up to work despite being sick, down from 49 per cent in 2012.  


Source: Southern Cross Health Society-BusinessNZ.


A full copy of the Southern Cross Health Society-BusinessNZ 2019 Workplace Wellness Report is available. Click this link to view it:



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