More often than not, being healthy is associated with just the absence of any disease and not with an overall state of wellness. Conventionally speaking, this applies even more to mental health which has always been measured by a different yardstick, especially in workplaces. After the pandemic drastically confined employees to their homes, the conversation around mental wellness started to gain momentum and found its way to corporate spaces as well.
However, the silver lining here is that the employers have taken cognizance of these concerns and are stepping up with solutions to combat them. They are doing so by taking the people-first approach to increase productivity and retention at the workplace.
This has translated into a growing number of workplaces coming up with wellness programs for employees, which also include mental well-being. With recurrent Covid variants constantly redefining the norms of workplaces across the globe, a cohesive approach to mental wellness becomes more crucial than ever. Here’s how digitisation is helping corporations ensure a healthy workforce in every sense of the word.
Leveraging technology to bridge the missing gaps
Technology has had a phenomenal role to play ever since the outbreak. It has touched billions of lives by facilitating a seamless flow of services in a contactless world. For the corporate world too, it enabled us to have a system in place where the workforce could operate and stay connected remotely and safely. However, this sudden and radical shift brought about by a prolonged pandemic also took a toll on people’s mental health. Fear of illness, loss of loved ones, pay-cuts, job loss or blurring work-life balance - there are countless factors that contributed to these elevated stress levels.
Fortunately, technology has helped address these concerns on a large scale for employers everywhere. Telemedicine has come to the rescue of those who seek expert medical guidance from the comfort and safety of their homes. Employers are offering free or unlimited online consultations with top doctors across specialties to effectively address the health concerns of employees. Virtual care not only replicates a lifelike experience but also helps overcome the stigma associated with mental health issues. By providing ease of access and more convenience in a confidential manner, telemedicine has greatly helped bring mental wellness to the forefront.
Taking a holistic approach with preventive healthcare
By and large, prevention is always better than cure. While it is common to keep physical health issues at bay by opting for preventive healthcare, the same practice is seldom followed when it comes to mental health. The pandemic has played a pivotal role in bringing corporate decision-makers on board with making mental wellness initiatives a part of preventive healthcare. They are incentivising the employees with wellness benefits for keeping a tab not only on their physical health but mental health as well. By enabling access to yoga classes, health and fitness content and online or offline sessions with the experts, workplaces are moving towards a holistic wellness approach. Technology has made it possible for employees to access these services at the time and place of their choice and convenience.
Helping build a sense of belongingness and purpose
The employer-employee relationship is constantly evolving and has especially undergone a massive transformation in the past two years of the pandemic. Keeping pace with the current environment, technology has helped bridge the gaps in communication and provided ease of access in remote work settings. This has helped employees exercise better control over their mental health and seek expert support for any issues well before they snowball into something major. Digitisation has also eliminated the several operations-heavy or paperwork-heavy practices that had been conventionally followed in the workplace.
This has helped employers generate a sense of meaning and purpose amongst their employees. Following a proactive approach in mental healthcare is also helping instil a sense of belongingness in the workplace. This becomes especially important at a time when the workforce is operating remotely with mostly work-centric interactions. During these times, investing in overall employee well-being will go a long way in employee engagement and retention and will also strengthen their organisational ties.