In its bid to continuously support the business community, the Health and Wellness Committee within The Malta Chamber has compiled a report including a number of recommendations to Employers and Government to build a Culture of Wellness & Resilience during COVID with Employees.
Click here to download the full document.
The need to identify secure methods to remain aligned with the highest health and safety standards to ensure an optimum level of employee welfare while still maintaining a profitable level of productivity emerged after the benchmarking session ‘Developing a Culture of Wellness and Resilience during COVID’ and a webinar aimed at the manufacturing industry on how better control positive cases at the place of work, both held in the last couple of months.
After analysing a number of individual, company-specific and sectoral challenges, the Committee outlined a number of best practices for employers to increase wellbeing and embrace stress positively to create a more resilient workforce. Employers need to develop new support programmes that can help employees build resilience, embrace mindfulness, and strengthen wellbeing to increase resilience to continue to work in the new norm. Furthermore, digital tools can help a great deal shifting staff meetings, networking, and events online to ensure that communication between employees is maintained at a satisfactory level.
Healthy communication channels also aid in satisfying the need to be transparent and factual with staff. This approach with regular communication and open communication between management and employees provide the right climate, support, and security for a positive environment.
Companies should also consider offering informative sessions to staff on health and safety areas, and other wellness-related topics such as sleep, nutrition, and financial management. A key trend noted by The Malta Chamber has been the emergence of a more flexible approach. This includes encouraging employees to dress more casually when possible, allowing them the space to work when they can if deadlines are met and allowing to them to work where they see fit, always with their eye on agreed outcomes.
The document also provides a list of recommendations aimed at Government level to aid the workforce. Businesses must be given, and themselves seek, more training and understanding of contact tracing and social distancing measures at work in order to limit the numbers of infections and quarantined employees. Health and Safety risk assessments are a legal requirement for employers and templates are available to assist them. Incorporating mental health risk assessments during this period is also advised.
Digitalisation also plays a vital role. The Government should continue to incentivise businesses to go digital and must continue to provide the right incentives to do so, such as through the ‘Re-engineering and Transforming’ scheme organised in collaboration with The Malta Chamber.
Smart investment is at the heart of this document. Much needed investment to battle mental health issues should be prioritised by Government. Apart from the other tangible recommendations proposed, enforcement of current measures must be strengthened and efforts should be made to find ways to have consistent messaging from government and the opposition in the battle against COVID-19.
The Health and Wellness Committee within The Malta chamber is supported by Atlas Insurance.