More workplaces promoting wellbeing for employees

More workplaces are using clinical psychologists to improve the wellbeing of their staff.

Even the Government is emphasising the importance of wellbeing, by making it a bidding criteria for next year’s Budget. Source: 1 NEWS

Even the Government is getting on board, with next year's budget considering wellbeing when it comes to allocating money.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson says looking at wellbeing is important to help deal with complex issues like inequality and climate change.

"We're not going to be able to face up to those challenges if we've got a very narrow approach," he says.

Many businesses, including accounting software firm Xero, are turning to psychologists to run wellness programmes.

"The world has changed and you can’t look at someone as a single person based on what their job is – you have to look at their whole life," says Xero’s People Manager Linda Shearer.

She says staff are being taught about the science of stress, mindfulness, and ways of coping.

"[We’re seeing] higher levels of engagement, higher levels of productivity, and they’re more likely to stay at Xero." 

Gaynor Parkin, a psychologist who owns Umbrella Health and runs the programme for Xero, says there's been a rise in interest over the past years, especially with changes to the Health and Safety Act in 2015 requiring workplaces to consider more than physical safety.

She insists it doesn’t have to cost much, with ideas including forced breaks, and no emails out of work hours.

"Leaders can model that and encourage that and have conversations around that without spending money," Ms Parkin says.