healthy lifestyles

Employee health and wellness

What is the issue?

Diet and lifestyle play a vital role in a healthy, productive workplace. However, all over the world, many of us aren’t eating a balanced diet or doing enough exercise.

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Why is it important?

As the world’s largest food manufacturer, we are acutely aware of the public health issues and challenges of non-communicable diseases facing the UK population including obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. As a major employer in the UK we take this responsibility seriously and support our employees to lead healthier lifestyles while at work and beyond.

 

Society

Healthier, happier employees.

Business

A more motivated, productive and focused workforce.

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What are we doing about it?

At Nestlé, we take a holistic approach to health in the workplace. Our employee wellness strategy considers health from a whole-person perspective, covering physical and mental health, nutrition, work-life balance and the workplace environment.

The Nestlé Framework for Employee Health, which was approved by the Executive Board in February 2015, is designed to give our efforts to promote employee health a consistent structure and focus across our global business. In the UK we are fully aligned to this approach.

The framework has three pillars:

LEARN - help employees enhance their health knowledge and become passionate nutrition, health and wellness ambassadors. FEEL - help employees access information about – and take ownership of - their own health. CHOOSE - help employees develop and maintain healthy lifestyles.

We believe that the workplace is the ideal place to encourage healthier behaviour. In line with this, in February 2015, we launched a three-year programme to offer all UK employees free, evidence-based health checks. Through these one-to-one health assessments, we promote healthy behaviour and give employees a better understanding of their health risks, so they can make informed choices about their health.

The health checks are easily accessible, take place in a supportive environment, and offer the opportunity for targeted interventions when necessary. We also use the evidence we gain from the checks to guide the way we promote health in the local communities around the offices and factories where we work.

Keeping our employees safe, healthy and engaged is a top priority. We know that psychological wellbeing is an important factor that may affect our people’s ability to contribute their full potential to the company. Psychological wellbeing is an important consideration in our wellbeing strategy and will be an important area of focus for 2016 and 2017.

As part of our commitments under the Public Health Responsibility Deal, we have pledged to promote healthy diets and exercise in our workplace. At all our sites in the UK, we aim to provide catering arrangements that offer a choice of foods in line with our minimum nutrition standards.

 

Getting active in the workplace

In 2014 and 2015 we stepped up our efforts to promote physical activities for employees, in line with our pledge under the Public Health Responsibility Deal. This included providing onsite workplace gyms, encouraging employees to take part in local sports events and clubs, and discounts for sports activities.

We encourage a flexible approach so that employees can fit in some exercise during the working day. Our head office gym offers a variety of private and group fitness classes throughout the day, led by a personal trainer.

Since 2012 we’ve been working with our charity of choice, Action for Children, to raise money for vulnerable children across the UK. During 2014 and 2015, more than 80 employees took part in a range of challenging sports events to support the charity, including the London Marathon, Great North Run, Yorkshire Three Peaks, the Great North Swim and Tough Mudder.

Read more about our community and charity work.

 

RSPH award

In 2015, the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) awarded Nestlé UK & Ireland a two-year Health and Wellbeing Award for our employee health and wellbeing strategy.

The RSPH particularly commended our health check programme, which is available to all of our 8,000 employees across the UK. Part of our Employee Wellbeing Framework, the programme offers all employees free, one-to-one advice about mental and physical wellbeing.

 

Pets at work

Through the Pets At Work (PAW) programme, led by Nestlé Purina, Nestlé Gatwick has become the first Nestlé HQ worldwide to allow employees to bring their furry friends into the office.

Nestlé’s office at Gatwick has adapted its open plan office, making it a place where employees and dogs can work together in a happy and safe environment.

The programme forms part of Nestlé's Employee Health and Wellbeing agenda, with a recent survey by Purina revealing that staff are happier and healthier when they are able to take their pets to work.

Results also show that 47% per cent of 18-24-year-olds surveyed said that they view bringing a pet to work as a work perk.

Pets are introduced to the workplace through a three-phase programme which includes a questionnaire, two behaviour assessments, plus a health check and in-office probation period.

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What’s next?

In 2016-2017, as part of our employee wellness strategy, we aim to carry out a wellbeing at work survey to ask our employees what are the enablers or barriers to having a great day at work. We will use the insights from this to plan our psychological wellbeing strategy for 2017 and beyond.

As part of the strategy, we will create a mandatory training package to give our line managers the resources and skills to help promote positive psychological wellbeing in their teams and to recognise when or if their people are struggling.

In addition, we will offer training and support to promote personal resilience to all our employees in order to enable them to recognise what a good day at work looks like, what is the role of resilience and how to understand their natural strengths to support this.

The Royal Society for Public Health will provide the first report on the results of the impact assessment of our employee wellness programme after the first year of evaluation in 2016 which will inform our strategy going forward.