Helping employees be the best they can be

Unilever

Global strategy for Medical and Occupational Health

SDG_ wellbeing

We aim to support our employees to be the best they can be. This includes giving them tools to promote, maintain and enhance their health so they can maximise their fitness and, at the same time, improve their capacity to work safely and effectively. This benefits the individual and our business.

Our global strategy for Medical and Occupational Health has two core elements:

• health promotion – to promote, maintain and enhance the health of our employees, maximising their wellness and enabling them to work safely and effectively.
• health protection – to protect our employees from work-related hazards to their health, including in our manufacturing facilities, ergonomically or while travelling.

We bring our strategy to life through targeted health promotions and health protection programmes, including our flagship Lamplighter programme. Lamplighter is our worldwide programme for improving employee health. In 2017, it covered 74 countries, reaching around 75,000 employees.

Programmes such as this have important short- and long-term health and business benefits. In the short term, we expect to see healthier, more motivated and more productive employees, with lower levels of sick leave. We aim to have more conversations about well-being and support our employees to work towards improving their well-being. We see the long-term benefits as achieving a sustainable workforce with long-lasting good health, happiness and purpose for our colleagues. And for our business, we see lower healthcare costs, which in turn also contribute to reducing the burden on public healthcare.

We’ve commissioned multi-year studies to evaluate the return on investment (ROI) of our health programmes. These analyses examined risk prevalence data across ten lifestyle-related risk factors from 2008 to 2017. We also looked at data around programme participation, programme investments, and median annual compensation – which we used to determine productivity savings associated with changes in risk prevalence.

Our aggregated results show that for every €1 we spend on Lamplighter programmes, we see a return of €2.44 – indicating that good health really is good for business.