Technology organisation Oracle offers group income protection as a core employee benefit. In 2016, it introduced a dedicated service, branded Swift and provided by Unum, which enables line managers to support the wellbeing of employees.
Michelle Bradshaw, compensation and benefits director, explains: “Line managers are often the first point of contact when an employee experiences a health or wellbeing concern. However, due to the disparate nature of our UK workforce, and the possibility of managing a team across global locations, managers often lacked the knowledge to proactively signpost employees to the best health and wellbeing support.”
Through the service, managers are able to identify the best health and wellbeing options for Oracle UK’s employees through information on the resources available, including when and where to use them. The programme guides line managers to the most appropriate wellbeing options; managers can call or email, and receive individual advice within 24 hours.
During the programme’s first year, Oracle saw 75 referrals, with 85% having a mental health-related aspect. The organisation’s average absence rate fell from 26 days in 2015 to 21 days in 2016.
“Swift enabled us to proactively support the overall wellbeing of our employees, tackle potential health and wellbeing issues before they arose, and quickly and responsibly, manage any issues that did,” adds Bradshaw. “The result was increased productivity, engagement and lower sickness absence costs; a true win for our [organisation] and employees.”