The Real Cost of Not Having an Organisation-wide Wellbeing Initiative

The link between corporate culture and employee wellbeing is only getting stronger with research and statistics consistently backing up these claims. Wellness and/or wellbeing programs, beyond just a gym membership, are quickly becoming an organisational priority for the multitude of benefits provided to both the individual and the employer, in and out of the workplace. 

In our previous blog post “Organisational success and employee wellbeing”, we touched on the three aspects of a wellness initiative. These were: 

  1. Physical 
  2. Emotional 
  3. Social 

Not only is a wellbeing program important for the individual, but it is also just as critical for the success of the organisation itself. Wellness programs have proven themselves as a strategic imperative, not just a nice to have. 

‘When employees enjoy a happy, healthy work environment, you start seeing exciting innovations in business. It’s the difference between an organisation that’s simply functioning and an organisation that’s capable of making huge leaps. It really comes down to the people who are working within it.’

 Dr Amanda Allisey, Deakin University

An organisation that is thriving, not just surviving, has the ability to adapt quickly, to innovate and move ahead of their competitors, all because they have happy and healthy employees. 

It is these healthy work environments that lend itself effortlessly to the overall success of an organisation, happier, cared for employees and subsequently, increased financial gain. It may feel counter intuitive to leverage an employee’s physical, emotional and social wellbeing as a strategic decision to make more money. Investing time and money into a wellbeing initiative is a major business decision and the bottom line is a very real and very important aspect in that decision process. But it shouldn’t be the only driving factor. 

Dr Allisey from Deakin University and her research in mental health has always stemmed from an organisation level. She believes that the benefits from adapting workplace structures and systems are wide-ranging and will help to facilitate a healthy working environment, which then overflows into our personal lives as well. 

“Employees are not just employees – they are also people in our communities. They are our siblings, our parents, our neighbours. So, if we can make organisations healthy, then I believe we can help make communities healthy.  And that leads to a healthy environment where everyone can flourish, she explains. 

The reality is that healthy employees cost you less. Approximately 40-50% of all absences are believed to be avoidable and are often the result of poor lifestyle habits, poor general health and work-related stress [source]. The cost of absenteeism in Australia is estimated at $44 billion per year. If calculated on a per person basis, this equates to 8.8 unscheduled days off annually, which does not include legitimate reasons like sickness, carer responsibilities or emergencies. These days off are costing employers approximately $578 per each day away from work. So why are we taking so much time off?  

Financial gain aside, implementing a wellness initiative is about caring for your employees. In order for them to be happy in their personal lives and at work, an organisation must care for all aspects of an individual’s wellbeing. “According to the Australian Government’s Public Service Commission, one of the major reasons is motivation.” [source] A lack of motivation stems from low job satisfaction, lack of or non-existent commitment, low work ethic or workplace tension.  

The flow on effects of a motivated individual is endless. From more energy and commitment to their work, innovative thinking, general happiness and so much more. The happier the employee, the better their performance which results in less costs, higher output and the reduced likelihood of losing great employees to competitors. 

Happy employees outperform their competition by 20%, with happy salespeople in particular producing 37% more sales. 

The research proves that an effective wellbeing initiative is a key factor attracting and retaining hard-working, talented and happy people that in turn help your organisation. There is no doubt that this is the future of strong organisational cultures and will set top companies apart. 

The question is, how can you implement a strategic and purposeful wellbeing initiative that will help individuals and your organisation? Corporate Edge is currently writing a new Wellbeing Program specifically designed for organisations and organisational culture. The program will teach your team members the necessary tools and implementation strategies for a more successful program and result. 

We’re teaming up with Skodel for a Lunch & Learn where we’ll chat through:

  • What organisational culture really means.
  • How it integrates with wellbeing.
  • How you as a leader can take advantage of Skodel insights and measures, to ensure you’re on track with your integrated wellbeing initiatives.

We’d love for you to join us! You can register to attend, or receive a recording of the session, by clicking the image below.

If you’d like more information please get in touch for a consultation call.


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