Employee wellbeing and workforce sustainability have risen to the top of the agenda for many leaders during the pandemic and have been among my top priorities since I took up my position as Crawford & Company’s UK and Ireland President in 2019.
Creating a happy, healthy workforce is essential for any modern business and increasingly critical to success as the world embraces more flexible, employee-focused ways of working. Over the past 18 months, we have introduced a number of initiatives to help our employees cope with remote working and to create a culture that brings the best out in people.
We launched Wellbeing Week and Mental Health Awareness Week which promote personal and professional health and wellbeing through keynote talks, resources and access to support. We’ve given employees free access to the mindfulness app Headspace and launched an employee engagement app to provide daily updates throughout the crisis.
We’ve also engaged with employees on how they want the office of the future to look and feel, introduced a smarter working policy allowing employees to choose how and where they work, and updated our benefits to include a revised holiday scheme and exam policy, a bike scheme and enhanced the bereavement leave entitlement.
Empowering employees is a key focus, so we created a learning program for senior leaders dedicated to helping them empower their people. If individuals feel valued, inspired and motivated, they take ownership of their work, generate ideas, find meaning and purpose at work and feel proud of the company they work for – and happy, engaged employees usually means happy clients.
We will shortly be launching this year’s IMPACT Awards, which recognises employee contributions, and also celebrates those who have brought empowerment to life in the business.
Talent management is also essential in building a sustainable workforce, so we launched the Crawford Academy to develop a variety of roles and help us promote from within.
This has all contributed to a tangible improvement in our culture. The conversation and the language people use has changed. Our people can see we are prioritising their wellbeing and employee engagement scores are up.
We’re also performing better as a company. We’re stronger coming out of the pandemic than we were going into it. By modernising our culture, we have modernised our service and are now reaping the rewards – and that all started with looking after our people.
This article first appeared in Modern Insurance - https://moderninsurancemagazine.co.uk/