A happy employee is a healthy employee, and now more than ever it extends to mental health and well-being. Experts who tracks these things say that in 2023, employers need to be cognizant of the needs of their workers if they want to retain them.
Aside from PTO and other perks, you can bet prospective job-seekers are checking to see what you’ll do for them in respect to their peace of mind.
Here are a few trends our experts predict will make an impact this year:
1- Access to mental health services. The best way to combat anxiety, depression and burnout is to offer a benefit package that will cover mental health services. Large companies sometimes have options in-house or resources within the community which are made available to employees. This can often bypass insurance issues. And some packages have generous perks that can include the family.
The expense to the company is considered worth it, if employees stick around and come in prepared to be productive.
2- Hybrid work options. Following the pandemic, many workers decided they liked the option of doing their jobs from home. Or wherever they had internet access actually. Offering a flex schedule of coming in a few days a week or for office meetings et cetera, allows employees to enjoy better work-life balance.
Depending on the nature of the job, this is one of the first things job-seekers ask about. The obvious challenge is making sure the employee doesn’t feel too disconnected from work peers and the work culture.
One frequent complaint from employees is that they feel guilty if they’re not always on the ready, answering emails and calls outside of general work hours.
3- Shorter work weeks, unlimited vacation. This may be a much bigger ask, but some companies go really big with free time. A four-day work week is becoming less of a rarity. In some instances, the work days are longer in exchange for more days off free and clear.
This is considered a big bonus for mental health because a longer stretch of free time is a much better stress reliever, leads to increased job satisfaction and a more focused workforce.
The unlimited time off probably sounds like heaven, but it is only embraced by a small percentage of companies, at this point. According to a 2021 survey on paid leave, only 4% of the 639 companies surveyed offer this benefit.
Looking at more cutting-edge industries, that number jumps considerably. In the world of finance, technology and digital media industries, 20% offer unlimited PTO. Of those, 15% are techies.
The fact that all of these options are trending in HR discussions shows that companies are placing a higher value on the work-life balance of their employees. Because, in this day and age, a little Zen goes a long way in creating a happy and productive workplace.