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It pays to look after your people

Gill Monk, All Health Matters

Just what is the most valuable asset your company has?  Is it the vehicle fleet, latest piece of plant and machinery, the IT system, the order book?

I would argue that while these things are essential to your business, it is the people who work for you who are your greatest asset, for without them there is no one to make your product, sell it, pack it, distribute it, invoice it, and collect payment for it.

So what happens when a machine breaks down, or the server crashes?  You immediately call in someone to fix it so the business can carry on doing what it does.  But when a member of staff goes off sick, what do you do?  Accept a medical certificate and set about covering the absence as best you can?

There can be no doubt that sick staff can seriously damage a business, not only financially, but also because of the effect it has on the morale of the workers left behind who can become resentful and feel ‘put upon’.

It makes perfect sense then to maintain this asset just as you would any other doesn’t it?

  • Ensure the people you employ are medically fit enough to do the job expected of them and if they have any underlying existing health conditions, you are fully informed of any adjustments you will be required to make to accommodate them
  • Have an appropriate health surveillance programme running, designed to identify potential problems very early
  • Adopt robust absence management processes entitling you to expect the member of staff to attend an independent health assessment with an Occupational Health professional in the event of long term or repeated short term absences.

This is what Occupational Health is all about.  We help employers manage the health of their greatest asset to keep Britain working.

Gill Monk is Managing Director at All Health Matters Limited.  She can be reached by email: gill@allhealthmatters.co.uk.  Visit www.allhealthmatters.co.uk for further information.