Achieving a work-life balance isn’t easy and we all know that, but we also need to realise how achieving one is so important for both our mental and physical health.
A number of employers enforce and glamourise a culture of over-working across several industries in the UK. Often employees believe that being the first one in, and the last one to leave, is the best way to impress your employer. But they also don’t see how stacking up these long days is affecting their mental and physical health.
Focusing specifically on the manufacturing industry (considered one of the most overworked industries in the UK) employees are working up to an average of 46 hours a week.
From an employer’s perspective, it is important to consider that overworking your employees can also immediately affect your business performance. It can result in a high absence level, increased turnover, negative employee reviews, and rising health problems.
A healthy work-life balance will mean different things to everybody, it doesn’t always mean splitting your time 50/50 between work and leisure as that can be impossible at times. A healthy work-life balance means feeling fulfilled and content in both areas of your life.
The pressure of today’s demanding work culture alongside keeping up with your personal life, exercising, and seeing friends can be a difficult challenge. Switching off from work when at home is key when it comes to achieving a work-life balance and your mental and physical health.
A survey by The Mental Health Foundation found that 1 in 3 people surveyed felt unhappy about the time they had devoted to working and 40% of them were neglecting other aspects of their life because of work.
The results also showed that the more hours that employees spend at work, the more hours outside of work they are likely to spend worrying about it.
The Mental Health Foundation states: “The cumulative effect of increased working hours is having an important effect on the lifestyle of a huge number of people, which is likely to prove damaging to their mental well-being.”
It is important for employers to also take into account how they can help their employees achieve a better work-life balance. Small changes and open conversations can often help employees struggling or feeling overwhelmed.
We have changed the way we work and revolutionised the typical working week for everyone within the company, from sales to manufacturing. We did this by operating under a four-day working week which would entitle our employees to every Friday off.
We talked openly to our employees and asked for their opinions first on what they thought about a four-day working week. We wanted to make sure that if we implemented this change that everybody would be on board with it and that it would improve everyone’s work-life balance.
We wanted to make sure that the four-day week opened up opportunities to spend time with loved ones, rest, recover, and for our employees to have a day just for them.
One thing we were certain of is that we didn't want this to impact them negatively such as losing pay or hours worked. That’s why we compressed their regular hours into a four-day week, making sure our employees could still take home the wage they are entitled to and achieve a healthy work-life balance.
We announced that all departments within both Belmont & Boxed-Up will be operating under a four-day working week. However, this is something we have been offering in our Manufacturing department since 2019 and working towards expanding for many years. After a lot of commitment and planning from management, the success of a four-day working week within manufacturing enabled us to be able to offer this to all departments.
The media attention, coverage from national newspapers, tv appearances, and social media engagement we received from this announcement has been overwhelming.
A big part of this decision has been based on how this will make our employees feel and how it can help them achieve a better work-life balance. Therefore, we were extremely pleased to hear the huge amount of positive feedback.
Our employees told us their work-home life was more balanced, they had more time for loved ones and the quality of time they spent together was better as they were more relaxed. We have employees who previously worked weekends, so now having the opportunity to have Friday-Sunday off was a real privilege to them.
From a business perspective, we have also seen an increase in productivity and overall employee satisfaction.
You can find out more about the perks and benefits we offer our employees by visiting our Vacancies page
14th October 2021
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Our sister business Boxed-Up manufactures and sells corrugated cardboard boxes for the smaller merchants wanting as little as 25 boxes at any given time. Take advantage of our wide range of stock boxes, high levels of stock and quick order process.