Blog Post

A holistic approach to employee health and workplace wellness

Cornerstone Editors

An organization that fails to align with the needs of a modern workforce faces uphill challenges when it comes to attracting, retaining and upskilling talent. Over the past few years, there's been a notable shift toward prioritizing employee wellbeing in the workplace, emphasizing the need for organizations to place it at the forefront of their concerns. But improving workplace wellness is no easy feat because there's no single solution. Yet the welfare of employees intertwines with every aspect of talent experience. As such, organizations must adopt a holistic employee wellness strategy, incorporating it into their broader talent management.

The Talent Health Index report, led by the Cornerstone People Research Lab, is a comprehensive dive into the state of talent development across global organizations. Beyond just research, it's a dynamic tool that helps businesses identify strategies to enhance wellbeing, boost productivity and drive organizational success. Using the Talent Health Index as our North Star, we can explore how organizations can improve workplace wellbeing.

Importance of mental health and workplace wellbeing

An organization is only as strong as its people. When an organization is adequately attuned to supporting the mental health of its staff, it presents the best opportunity for a business to thrive. Advocating for your team can increase productivity and efficiency, enhance employer reputation and reduce staff turnover.

For instance, research has found that 93% of employers and 85% of professionals agree that employees are more effective when they feel that their mental health and wellbeing are prioritized at work. However, conversely, just 51% of employers currently have a mental health policy, so work still needs to be done.

The holistic approach to employee wellbeing

It's important to acknowledge that there is no one way to boost workforce wellbeing, as it only exists in a vacuum. Many areas could impact how employees feel at work.

For instance, the global Talent Health Index revealed that nearly half of employees don't believe they have what they need to develop their skills. This lack of attention to skills could cause employees to feel their progression is not a priority for their employer, potentially leading them to feel demotivated and undervalued.

Additionally, the Talent Health Index unearthed that, in EMEA, just 37% of employees rated their organizations' attention to diversity and inclusion highly. This figure is considerably behind North America (72%) and the APAC region (59%). Employees not feeling a sense of belonging within their organization could significantly negatively impact their wellbeing, raising legitimate concerns.

Today, it's simply not enough for employers to offer quarterly workshops on wellbeing and mental health. Organizations must integrate workplace wellness into their comprehensive talent strategy to create a holistic employee experience.

The different dimensions or pillars of holistic employee wellbeing

So, where can employers start as they try to improve workplace wellbeing? As a first step, it's crucial to understand the different areas of talent experience. The Talent Health Index lays out seven dimensions of talent wellness:

  • Culture & Technology
  • Skills strategy
  • Learning & Development
  • Content strategy
  • Performance management
  • Talent mobility
  • Talent reporting, data & analytics

Mapping out talent wellness in this way allows organizations to understand how each dimension can impact and improve employee wellbeing.

The challenges in improving workplace wellbeing

A considerable challenge is that, with so many areas of talent wellness, organizations may need help knowing which one to start with. For instance, just 37% of organizations leverage learner-centric tools and technologies to streamline talent processes and information flow. On top of this, just 38% of organizations currently embed performance management technology into the flow of work while offering continuous support to employees. Another concern is that just 38% of companies now use AI to its fullest potential. With so many areas needing attention, how do organizations determine where to look first?

The Cornerstone Talent Health Index allows organizations to diagnose their most significant areas of opportunity, create a roadmap and take action across the seven dimensions. The self-assessment takes a granular approach, allowing organizations to see which areas most need improvement. Additionally, as the Talent Health Index has already benchmarked hundreds of organizations like yours, our self-assessment will tell you exactly where you need to improve relative to competitors and your goals. Companies with high maturity and performance show that creating a solid talent development program is within reach.

In an environment of near-constant change, improving the health of your talent can feel daunting. The Talent Health Index can help you begin your journey. By unearthing where to turn your attention, you can take the steps needed to enhance the wellbeing of your workforce on a grand scale.

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