Reduction in workplace absences due to wellbeing programmes

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Recent data highlights a pressing issue in the UK: the country has one of the highest rates of workplace absences globally. However, new research suggests that wellbeing programmes could be a key solution to reducing sick days.

Wellhub (formerly Gympass), a corporate wellbeing company, has released findings indicating that 89% of HR leaders found that wellbeing programmes actively reduce employees’ sick days taken. This data is part of Wellhub’s annual Return on Wellbeing Report, which surveyed HR leaders from 2,000 global companies of various sizes.

The impact of wellbeing programmes

Wellhub’s report reveals several significant benefits of corporate wellbeing initiatives:

  • Reduced Absences: 89% of HR leaders noted a reduction in sick days taken by employees.
  • Positive ROI: 95% of respondents observed a positive return on investment (ROI) from their wellness programs.
  • Increased Productivity: 99% of HR leaders stated that these programs boost employee productivity.
  • Lower Turnover Rates: 98% reported that wellbeing programs help decrease employee turnover.
  • Healthcare Cost Savings: 91% found that these initiatives cut the costs of their healthcare benefits.

A deeper look into the data

The data suggests that investing in employee wellbeing not only benefits the workforce but also translates into tangible business advantages. These findings are critical for addressing the UK’s high absenteeism rates and improving overall workplace health.

You can find out more about the key findings from the 2024 Return on Wellbeing by registering here for Wellhub’s webinar.

The broader context of workplace wellbeing

In his article for “5 Foundations for an Effective Employee Wellbeing Strategy,” David Bellamy emphasised the growing need for robust wellbeing strategies to combat burnout and mental health issues among employees. Despite the substantial $52 billion growth of the corporate wellbeing market in 2022, challenges persist. Bellamy pointed out that:

“In recent years, companies have faced growing calls to upgrade their wellbeing strategies to tackle the alarming rise in burnout and other mental health issues amongst employees. As a result, the corporate wellness market had grown to a staggering $52bn in 2022 and shows no sign of slowing. But, despite this spending, the workplace wellbeing crisis rages on.”

Bellamy elaborates: “The key causes of poor employee wellbeing stem from work itself. Work overload, job insecurity, ambiguous roles, lack of work-life balance, and digital isolation are not just buzzwords, but tangible challenges impacting employees’ health. The ramifications of this wellbeing crisis are profound, both in terms of the human costs and their financial implications.”

Compelling evidence

Wellhub’s report provides compelling evidence that comprehensive wellbeing programmes can significantly reduce absenteeism and offer substantial benefits to companies. As the corporate wellness market continues to evolve, it remains crucial for businesses to address the underlying work-related factors that impact employee health as well as providing tools for individuals.

Whilst it’s great to see concrete statistics pointing at the return of investment in workplace wellbeing, this new data underscores the importance of holistic and strategic approaches to employee wellbeing.

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29 May 2024

5 mins read


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