Staying Healthy While Staying Home: Wellness for Tech Employees
Of the multitude of challenges that tech companies in Dallas, Phoenix, and nationwide face as they navigate the current pandemic, ensuring wellness for tech employees may not seem like a high priority item. But maintaining the health and well-being of an IT company’s workforce, especially as more employees work from home, has a direct impact on the bottom line.
Sick days and lost hours, reduced productivity, increased healthcare costs, and diminished employee job satisfaction – all of these can cost companies millions of dollars each year.
For tech employees who work from home, staying mentally and physically fit can be a tall order. No more walking to the office or even just down the hallway to chat with coworkers. Lockdowns and social distancing limit gym access. A beckoning kitchen full of snacks. The stress of the pandemic and isolation from friends and colleagues increasing feelings of anxiety and depression.
Notwithstanding these impediments, maintaining a sense of wellness for tech employees who work from home does not have to be difficult. Here are four ways companies can help their homebound IT professionals stay happy and healthy.
Wellness for Tech Employees with a Remote Health and Well-Being Hub
Leverage the tools and technology that facilitate remote work to encourage wellness activities and provide health resources to your workforce. Create a shared folder in Google Drive or establish a Slack channel focused on health and well-being. Provide links to exercise and nutrition videos and articles, share healthy recipes and exercise tips, and allow employees to post their own wellness ideas.
Host Virtual Fitness and Wellness Classes
Yes, we all experience “Zoom fatigue” from time to time. But that doesn’t change the reality that virtual meetings are essential to maintain connection and communication among a remote workforce.
Host classes, seminars, and workshops focused on wellness for tech employees. Bring in nutritionists, trainers, and mental health experts to discuss the challenges employees face and provide tips and guidance for workers who may be struggling to stay fit and healthy. Offer fitness classes accessible to employees of all abilities, and host virtual cooking classes featuring nutritious meal ideas.
Establish Fitness and Wellness Challenges
Tech workers love games, competition, and winning. The “gamification” of wellness has proven to be an effective strategy for encouraging healthy habits and reducing illness among high tech employees.
Establish and promote a variety of wellness and fitness challenges with workers reporting their accomplishments and receiving rewards for participating or winning a given competition. These challenges can include:
- Walking/step challenges
- Nutrition and diet challenges
- Mindfulness and mental health challenges
- Healthy habit challenges
- Sleep challenges
Promote Mental Health Awareness and Provide Mental Health Resources
Recent research reveals that the pandemic has taken a devastating toll on our collective mental health, with skyrocketing rates of depression, substance abuse, and related problems. Tech employees in Dallas and across the country who work from home need to recognize, understand, and acknowledge common emotional and psychological issues and adopt approaches to deal with them in a productive and healthy way.
Emphasize the importance of mental health and create an environment that encourages employees to reach out for help without worrying about how it may look or whether seeking help will have a negative impact on their job. Provide them with resources for obtaining the help they need, and promote discussion and support groups that can connect remote employees who may feel lonely and isolated from the team.
The U.S. Centers For Disease Control and Prevention has a terrific workplace health wellness resource center that employers and employees alike can use to reduce risks, improve quality of life, and promote wellness for tech employees working from home.
Wellness for Tech Employees Starts with Getting the Right Job. GTN Technical Staffing Can Help
No matter what role you play in the tech industry or the kind of position you’re looking for, GTN Technical Staffing can help connect you to the job you want. Contact us today to learn how we can help you navigate an ever-changing tech employment landscape.