Why employee wellbeing is a BIG opportunity for SMALL businesses…

Updated: Mar 25, 2021

When we think about companies who look after their employees really well, it’s often the bigger ones which attract the attention of the national media and are the first to spring to mind. But there are many small businesses which are completely in tune with the wellbeing of their workforce, and they’re reaping the benefits of that mindset!

As the owner of a small company, it can be extremely difficult to set aside not only the time to focus on wellbeing, but also the funds from your budget. Every penny counts in business, so unless you can see the long-term picture in terms of the benefits to your company, then it can be difficult to make that decision. Luckily, today’s blog post focuses on exactly how investing in your employees’ wellbeing can pay off in the long run:

1. Fewer sick days – The average employee has 4.1 days off a year1, which means companies could be paying them more than £400 when they’re not actually at work (based on the average salary, if they receive full sick pay). This doesn’t take into account the cost of covering their work and the admin associated with time off. A healthier team = fewer days off = less expense.

2. Less presenteeism – The number of employees coming to work when they’re feeling under the weather has increased, with 86 per cent of respondents to a CIPD survey saying they’d experienced presenteeism within the last year2. Team members feeling unable to stay at home when they’re genuinely unwell is not something to be encouraged, so a culture where you work if you’re able to and stay at home if you’re going to be spreading germs or not able to get anything done (and can get better quicker) is definitely the way forward.

3. Productivity – A huge 77 per cent of workplaces where wellbeing strategies had already been implemented reported a positive effect on employees, according to Aviva3. Having your team in tip-top mental and physical health and firing on all cylinders can have a huge impact – and who wouldn’t want to see their team achieving more and inspiring others?

4. Team morale – Engaged employees with high wellbeing levels are more likely to be loyal to the company (they’re 35 per cent more attached, say Engage for Success4) and boost those around them. And when morale is high, this has a further impact on absence rates, productivity and much more besides.

5. Calibre of candidates –Wellbeing programmes not only have a great effect on team morale, they also do wonders for attracting higher calibre candidates when you’re hiring – 39 per cent would be more likely to choose to work for a company that had a broad range of health and wellbeing benefits on offer.

When you consider all the positive effects, the initial investment on workplace wellbeing can more than pay for itself – when you’ve got happy, healthy workers putting their all into everything they do and improving not only their own lives, but the business as a whole too, you’ll definitely be glad you made the decision! If you’re after more information and resources then I go into the benefits in much more detail in my white paper Why healthy employers equal a healthy business.


1 – ONS |

2 – CIPD |

3 – Aviva |

4 – Engage for Success |

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