This article is brought to you by our sponsor HealthSure.
Health-related sickness absence is one of the biggest concerns for British businesses today. It has been estimated that absence due to sickness costs around £12bn each year, with the average level of health-related absence at eight days per year per employee, representing 3.5% of working time. This equates to a cost of £598 per employee per year. As a result, sickness absence can have a serious impact on the bottom line and is an issue high on the agenda of most HR professionals, managing directors and line managers.
Employers who don’t take stress or health issues in the workplace seriously can leave themselves open to the risk of legal proceedings and compensation claims from employees. With these issues in mind, it is crucial that employers understand how the implementation of a strategic health management strategy or wellbeing scheme can make a real difference by showing staff that their health and wellbeing is of importance.
With the demands on employers increasing, many more are looking to cover their entire workforce with a healthcare policy. Although useful for providing access to private healthcare, private medical insurance (PMI) products are generally used to cover only senior employees for more serious medical requirements due to their costly nature.
A healthcare cash plan is a cost effective, accessible and relevant employee benefit that can help reduce sickness-related absenteeism in the workplace. It can be provided to all members of a team, regardless of age, status or length of service. Due to the everyday essential nature of cash plans, there is currently no conflict with PMI products. These products work hand-in-hand to complement each other. They may also help engage staff.
It has never been more important for employers to put effective health management and healthcare strategies in place to address these issues. While some sickness cannot be prevented, it is important to realise that fast and easy access to professional healthcare and advice can be a decisive factor in reducing time away from the workplace and can affect engagement.
Raman Sankaran, director of strategic development at HealthSure and LHF Healthplan
The views and opinions in this article are those of our sponsor, HealthSure, and do not necessarily reflect those of www.employeebenefits.co.uk.