An Employee Benefit That Truly Benefits
I’m always looking for companies doing innovative things to help their
employees. Whether it’s wonderful benefits like adoption support or nice “perks” like discounts on house cleaning services, benefits and perks play an important part in recruiting and retaining employees, and can make a huge difference in whether someone joins and stays with a company.
One of the areas that I’ve always supported has been bringing services and supports into the workplace. Back when I was an HR Director, I helped to institute an onsite concierge service that had a tremendous impact on employee productivity. And there’s a reason why "push-in" benefits matter…and work. Employees are in the office for at least 8 hours a day and while their focus is *supposed* to be on work, we all know the realities. Work/life issues remain – if not intensify – during many workdays and problems don’t disappear at a desk.
SUPPORT FROM THE INSIDE OUT
One UK-based company, Ribot, has recognized that, in many areas, employees need more than a website with information for support. They need a real live person. Sitting with them. Helping with their individual issues. So they’re bringing in a therapist on-site for four days a month for employees to access as needed (Does Your Company Need a Therapist?). Absolutely brilliant for a number of reasons:
• It begins to remove the stigma associated with stress and struggling and places a focus on mental health;
• It starts to normalize the fact that everyone has problems and can benefit from support; and
• It shows that work and life issues are fused together and that the workplace can be an okay place to try to make things better.
Yes, there are issues that need to be addressed – confidentiality, access time, manager concerns. Yet with support from the top and an open environment whereby the stress of everyday life is an acknowledged reality shared by all, this benefit can be a huge step forward in bringing employee support and innovation to a whole new level.
Everything new takes time...to integrate, acclimate, and assimilate. Yet with this valuable in-house support and similar types of services, smart companies are reaching out to employees in new ways to say that their well-being matters.
[Onsite support via monthly "office hours" is available for employees who have children with autism, ADD/ADHD, learning differences, and mental health issues receiving special education services. For more information, please contact me at Debra@debraischafer.com].