Should workplace support tackle employees’ home life stress?

Debbie Lovewell-Tuck

Where do you draw the boundary between work and home? Does such a thing even exist in today’s workplace?

The rise in flexible working and technological developments have led to an ‘always-on’ culture for many employees. Checking and responding to email at any time of the day or night, catching up on work out of hours or dealing with business in different time zones before or after their working day is now a matter of course for many individuals.

But does this work both ways, with employers providing support for employees’ personal lives through the workplace? And, if not, should it? After all, there are numerous pieces of research demonstrating the impact that non-work related stress and personal issues can have on performance and productivity at work.

A number of employers have now recognised this and taken steps to support employees’ personal lives through the workplace. Of course, as a concept, this in itself is nothing new – you only have to look at the original paternalistic employers such as Cadbury.

What has changed, however, is the types of issues employers are now looking to support, which, in many cases, are a lot more personal in nature than they previously may have been. Royal Mail, for example, has introduced a scheme that provides support for employees who are going through a separation and family breakdown. Read more about this in How are benefits strategies expanding to support employees’ lives outside of the workplace?

One area in which individuals are increasingly looking to their employer for support is their finances. Yet, understandably, this remains a sensitive issue. So, how can employers create an environment in which employees feel comfortable addressing their financial needs, what form should this support take, and what are the big issues that will be driving employers’ financial education strategies in 2017? Find out more in the Financial education supplement.

If you are an employer that has made great headway in this, or any, area of benefits strategy, why not gain recognition for all your hard work by entering the Employee Benefits Awards 2017? The deadline for submissions for the awards has now been extended to 20 January 2017. Find all the information you need to enter at

Debbie Lovewell-Tuck