Workplace wellness is any workplace health promotion activity or organizational policy designed to support healthy behavior in the workplace and to improve health outcomes. A healthy workplace means more than just warding off colds and the flu. It is more holistic and takes into consideration the physical, spiritual, environmental, intellectual, emotional, occupational and mental health of employees. Wellness promotion doesn’t just benefit the employee because an organization filled with healthy and fulfilled employees is a productive workplace that retains its employees. More and more organizations are creating Health and Welfare Committees who are responsible for recognizing health and safety concerns and identifying solutions.
One way to implement a workplace wellness program is through modern technology. There are thousands off wellness apps available to track various aspects of wellness. Before implementing a program is it important to find out what your employees want, test potential apps and be ready to address potential resistance to the program. Here are some of the most popular workplace wellness apps:
“Overqualified.” This is a term that everyone has heard of, but is it something that HR even considers these days? Unfortunately, no, but maybe it is time to look at so-called overqualified people in a different way. There are many reasons why a person with a lot of experience and/or qualifications might apply for a job that they appear overqualified for:
– Changing careers
– After a lay-off
– After completing a contract position
In these situations, job seekers may be fearful that they are taking a step down in their career path, earning less money, and could be bored with reduced responsibilities. For these reasons, many HR professionals choose to not consider these candidates, expecting turnover. However, many HR professionals are now looking at this differently: either you are qualified, or you are not.
We have all been there, struggling to stay awake during a marathon three-hour meeting, only to leave and wonder, “what was the point?” The statistics on unproductive meetings in the workplace are staggering, both the amount of time spent and the amount of money paid on salaries for hours spent in unnecessary meetings. So, what can managers do to limit unnecessary meetings and make what is necessary productive?
Ever feel like your meeting looks like this?
Strategic HR planning is required when implementing operational plans and goals for an organization. The purpose of this HR planning is to determine if an organization has the right people, with the right skills at the right time. Any plan to determine workplace needs and a strategy to support organizational goals consists for a few steps:
1. Assessment: The knowledge, skills and abilities of staff needs to be analyzed. This can be accomplished by developing a skills inventory for each employee and listing all education and training. It is helpful to re-examine job descriptions for current employees as well.
2. Forecasting: There are many questions that need to be answered at this step.
– How many staff will be required to fulfill the plans and goals of the organization?
– What skill sets are required?
– Do your current employees have the required skills?
– Are employees currently using their strengths?
In Canada, new mothers are entitled to 17 weeks maternity leave and up to 35 weeks parental leave (Canadian government has plans to extend leave up to an optional 61 weeks of parental leave at a lower rate). Mothers who do not take maternity leave and all other new parents are entitled to up to 37 weeks parental leave. Employees on leave have the right to continue participation in certain benefit plans, continue credit for length of employment, service and seniority. In most cases, employee must be given their old job back at the end of pregnancy or parental leave.
This is a significant amount of time to be away from the workplace, and not without its challenges. Here are some tips for parents returning to work after pregnancy and/or parental leave:
Your employees are your organization’s most valuable assets. Helping them stay healthy keeps your organization healthy—with reduced absenteeism due to illness, and increased productivity due to better health. Promoting workplace wellness and implementing workplace wellness programs is one of best investments you can make as an employer.
According to the Agribusiness HR Review, wellness programs were among the 6th most commonly offered benefits for agribusiness employers. There are many ways that you can support work-life balance in your workplace – even with a limited budget. Start by finding out from your employees what wellness programs would support their work-life balance. Then back up your wellness program with policies, encourage employees to make use of your workplace wellness programs and affirm that tapping into these options will not negatively affect their employment with you.
There have been a lot of changes in Western Canada over the last 3 years which have impacted recruitment and retention in the agriculture industry! It was not that long ago that there was a labour shortage in the western provinces, due in part to a thriving economy. There were more high-paying jobs than people and people were flocking to Alberta in droves from other provinces.
Fast forward a few years and oh how things have changed! Lower oil prices have halted/slowed oilsands production, putting many out of work, and driving unemployment. Many agriculture employers were initially optimistic that they would have more candidates, which initially did appear to be the case.
However, many employers have been hesitant to hire those from other industries, worried that as soon as the price of oil and gas rises, they will lose those employees and be back to square one. The reality is that there are now more jobseekers in western provinces, but are they the potential employees that agribusinesses want to hire?
This is one of the big challenges, and here are some tips and things to consider when trying to hire in western Canada:
There are many factors to consider when hiring a new employee. There are the obvious defined duties, responsibilities and tasks that will be required for the new employee to fulfill. Additionally, there are many non-essential qualifications that an employer may ask for that can be an asset to the role. These contribute to a person’s “fit” within the team and organization. New employees can come from a variety of backgrounds with varying experience, so it is important for an employer to meet new hires with appropriate expectations and meeting new hires “where they are.”
Job hopping traditionally was considered moving from one company to the next every one to two years, multiple times. The reasons for these moves was due to something other than a layoff or company closure. However, times have changed and it is unusual for individuals to stay in a position or at a company for over 6 years. Studies show that the average number of years a worker stays with an employer is 4.6 years, for younger employees (20 – 34) it is half that, at 2.3 years.
So, what does that mean for employers? Many employers and recruiters have changed their expectations, but still look for patterns in work histories. One short-term stay in a job is not cause for concern, and neither is a series of short-term jobs that were designed to be short-term, such as contracts or internships. However, when there is a pattern of quickly leaving jobs that were not designed to be short-term, it can become a cause for concern for an employer.
Sexism in the workplace is a complicated topic that can be very difficult for both men and women to deal with. Effective methods of coping and reacting depend very much on the situation and the individuals involved. But most importantly, people should understand that no one should have to deal with harassment or sexism in the workplace. In any situation, if a person feels threatened or harassed, they should go to management or their human resources department immediately.
While overt sexual harassment is a very real problem, many people have to deal with more indirect forms of discrimination which can be difficult to navigate. Specifically, many women are expected to tolerate sexist jokes, pet names, comments about appearances and expectations that they take on a disproportionate share of office domestic work and tasks. What can women or men do in these situations? Ideally, we would want people to call out sexist behaviour publicly, but many times, that approach can result in a backlash against the complainant from coworkers and supervisors.