Newry based global marine outfitting specialists MJM Marine are reaping the rewards of the free Work Well Live Well programme, delivered by Northern Ireland Chest Heart and Stroke (NICHS) and funded by the Public Health Agency (PHA), which is available to local businesses aiming to improve workplace health and wellbeing.
The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in seismic changes to both the way that work is carried out in many industries, and to the state of the job market. With many organisations experiencing difficulty attracting and maintaining staff due to changes in employee expectations, business owners have been seeking new ways to step up to address these issues. MJM Marine have found the Work Well Live programme has supported them to scale these hurdles.
Quintina Little, SHEQ Manager at MJM Marine says, “We are committed to the health and wellbeing of employees and understand that a healthy workforce is a happy workforce. We appreciate that any company’s best asset is its people and want to make sure that employees feel great at work.”
Work Well Live Well is a free workplace health and wellbeing support programme delivered by Northern Ireland Chest Heart and Stroke (NICHS) and funded by the Public Health Agency (PHA). The aim of Work Well Live Well is to help local workplaces to improve the health and wellbeing of their employees through personalised support. As part of the programme, NICHS support organisations with carrying out a health and wellbeing survey, developing a bespoke, 3-year action plan for their team as well as providing access to training, webinars, resources, and networking opportunities.
Quintina continues, “The Work Well Live Well programme survey was an opportunity to identify areas for us to work on which were relevant to employee wants and needs while the action plan forced us to sit down, agree activities and events and set target dates – it really forced the mind.”
“Some areas identified by our employees through the survey included nutrition and water intake, musculoskeletal health, physical activity and stress so we got to work on arranging events and initiatives relating to these key areas. To date we have delivered a healthy breakfast event with a nutritional speaker, Healthy Eating on a Budget and Alcohol Well Talks by NICHS, provided healthy options in our vending machine and free fruit for all fortnightly, distributed company branded water bottles and provided MOT Health Checks for staff through NICHS. In addition to what we have achieved so far, we are arranging a team building day, training for more mental health first aiders among many other exciting events across the remainder of the year.”
Quintina adds, “We have quite a few employees that following the healthy breakfast event, committed to improving their eating habits and physical activity levels. The results are clear to see and from speaking to them, they are much more energetic, sleep better and generally feel great!"
“The programme has led to benefits including improved engagement with employees - not only has the programme allowed us to work on areas that matter to employees, but it has encouraged them to bring forward further ideas which improves consultation and provides a sense of ownership, which is great for our health, safety and welfare culture overall.”
To other businesses considering signing up, Quintina says, “Go for it! The programme focuses on areas identified by employees themselves therefore the uptake on activities and initiatives is greater and buy-in is easily achieved. I couldn’t recommend it enough and the staff at NICHS are supportive, approachable and so knowledgeable – truly fabulous!”
Emma McCrudden, Work Well Live Well Programme Manager at Northern Ireland Chest Heart & Stroke says; “As a local charity, our mission is to prevent chest, heart and stroke conditions and support people affected, and our vision is a healthy Northern Ireland free from chest, heart and stroke illnesses. We recognise that the workplace is a priority setting for influencing the physical and mental wellbeing of employees and delivering the PHA funded Work Well Live Well programme is just one way that we are working to promote good health in workplaces across Northern Ireland to prevent serious illness in the long term.”
“MJM Marine is a great example of a workplace which wanted to make a positive change and put staff health first. The initiatives put in place by MJM Marine have been a great success and have made a real difference to the health and wellbeing of the team. We are now recruiting new workplaces to take part in the programme and would encourage organisations of all types and sizes to get in touch to find out how Work Well Live Well can help them.”
For more information and to register for Work Well Live Well, visit nichs.org.uk/workwelllivewell