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Why is work life balance important and how can it be achieved?

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Maintaining employee happiness and productivity is a constant struggle for employers in an attempt to create and promote a healthy work life balance.

Not only is a healthy work life balance crucial to keeping employees motivated and giving them a sense of job satisfaction, but it is also significantly important to employee health by reducing stress substantially. This is key when considering that 54% of people suffer from work related stress, indicating a rise in absenteeism and costing UK employers £1.24 billion per year.

Supporting the way in which an employee allocates their time and energy between work and life’s non-work commitments will also help to create a stronger employer brand – Google, for instance, are a highly desirable brand for both consumers and employees alike, attracting the highest calibre of quality talent through their strong company culture.

They promote an unbelievable work life balance, recognising that technology is ultimately preventing employees from switching off and offering napping pods and free yoga classes to promote mindfulness.

With candidates placing company culture and a strong work life balance high on the list of necessities when searching for a job and the ball firmly in their court thanks to the shrinking talent pool, employers are having to do more and more in order to attract candidates. Tech businesses are experimenting with four day weeks, suggesting that employees are more productivity and efficiency has increased with the provision of a three day weekend.

So how can work life balance be achieved?

Flexibility

Whilst each employee is different, all of them will have some form of external commitments, hobbies and activities outside of work. Offering employees flexible working hour opportunities can make a world of difference in getting the right balance.

Paid time off in lieu and overtime opportunities can also help, with employees being rewarded for their efforts.

Mindfulness

The promotion of mindfulness is hugely important in increasing productivity and prevent work related illness. Incorporating this into learning and development and training opportunities can ultimately assist those struggling to balance their work and life commitments.

Events

Putting on events outside the workplace that sponsor both team building exercises and spending time with family and friends can create a highly sought after company culture and enviable work life balance for employees.

Not only will this shape employee relationships, making the work life balance less of a grind at work, but it will encourage employees to spend time with their loved ones and endorse employee happiness.

Trust

Distractions in the work place are unavoidable, whether it be the looming eleven o’clock social media check or the secret online sale. The ten minute distraction is however often mitigated by the late night emails and working lunches.

Whilst it’s important not to let procrastination become a productivity killer, trust your employees to make adult decisions!

Work life balance is about creating equilibrium and managing all aspects of your life – one size doesn’t fit all so talk to employees in order to ascertain their needs and take control of your strategy to protect your employer brand.

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