Shift work plays a crucial role in numerous industries.
If your organisation has shift workers you’ll know the unique challenges of supporting wellbeing in this particular demographic. Irregular hours and disrupted sleep patterns can impact on shift workers’ physical, social, and emotional wellness.
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So what are the best ways for employers to support and improve wellness in their shift workers?
Why wellness matters for shift workers
Wellness and wellbeing aren’t vague terms. They should be tangible data points that can be measured for the benefit of your organisation and the individuals involved. Shift work has obvious challenges for the employee’s physical health (both short- and long-term), emotional and mental health, and social wellbeing outside the workplace with friends and family.
These things matter because healthier people are happier people, and happy employees do better work and stick around longer. Physical and mental wellbeing have obvious links with productivity, absenteeism, and health and safety outcomes.
7 ways to nurture wellness in shift workers
Sleep hygiene – sleep is an essential part of wellness but a consistent challenge for shift workers. Offer employees education and resources to support better sleep patterns, and encourage their engagement with other factors that positively affect sleep (better nutrition, physical activity, regular exercise).
Good nutrition – shift work can impact the body’s ability to regulate hunger hormones, meaning it’s more likely that shift workers will make poor food choices or develop a tricky relationship with food. As their employee, you can offer access to healthy food snacks and meals during all shifts, and educate shift workers about the importance of a balanced diet to supporting good health. Consider partnering with local or national F&B outlets as an employee benefit for shift workers.
Physical activity – encourage regular movement breaks for walking, stretching, and getting out in fresh air (and sun where possible), so shift workers can increase their activity levels and get sufficient Vitamin D from sunlight.
Discounted gym access – regular exercise has proven benefits for short- and long-term health, better sleep patterns, mood, and “habit stacking” including food choices. Make sure your corporate gym access is suitable for all shift workers no matter when or where they work. This means thinking beyond access to a single facility or an on-site gym.
Mental health support – provide access to relevant mental health resources including counselling services, stress management workshops, and support around sleep. If this isn’t possible in-house, create links with external partners and offer this as an employee benefit.
Peer support – establish peer support, mentoring, or social groups for shift workers so they can share their wellbeing strategies and feel connected within your organisation.
Reward and recognise – shift workers can often feel out of the loop due to the hours or location of their work. Set up systems to acknowledge and reward your shift workers so they feel valued and seen.
Discounted gym access as a benefit for shift workers
Gym access consistently tops the list of desirable employee benefits, but it’s no longer enough to provide discounted access to a local gym. Your shift workers need access to fitness facilities that suit their shift patterns. And the services on offer need to be varied and motivating enough to encourage employees to exercise even during challenging shift patterns. Don’t make the mistake of offering an employee benefit that your shift workers can rarely use.
Create a corporate fitness offer to suit shift workers
The best way to offer gym access as an employee benefit – particularly for shift workers – is to give the choice of multi-site access. By definition, this option will suit every employee in your organisation, including shift workers.
Hussle makes it very easy to offer “fitness as a benefit” in a flexible way that will work for everyone in your organisation. Our memberships offer access to thousands of gyms, pools, and fitness centres. With one membership, your employees have the flexibility to choose when, and where they go to the gym – near home, near work, or on the road. And our wide range of price points means Hussle really suits any income level, making this a meaningful benefit that can always be used.
Inclusive corporate gym membership inclusive for shift workers
Supporting physical wellbeing in shift workers has to go beyond offering gym access that would suit a 9-5 office worker. When you get employee benefits right for shift workers, you show your commitment to nurturing and recognising the wellbeing of every employee across your organisation.
Hussle’s huge network of gyms and fitness centres across the UK are available within Hussle membership. So when you partner with us for your fitness employee benefits, you really do offer every employee an exciting, flexible, varied set of choices.
Find out how Hussle can support you in giving the best corporate gym membership in a package that will foster a healthier, more positive workplace culture across your organisation.