A major Northern Ireland manufacturer is pushing the boundaries of its Health & Safety responsibilities to deliver a dedicated year-long programme designed to promote its workforce’s total well-being.
AG (Acheson + Glover) is moving the H&S conversation on to include a well-being dimension, challenging itself to incorporate practical, tangible initiatives and services based on needs identified by staff themselves across its seven sites.
The Co Tyrone headquartered firm has invested considerable time, effort and money in its ambitious aims by launching a specially tailored programme geared toward total physical and mental health and well-being.
AG Activ8 – a specifically tailored programme – is due to launch in August. It follows a comprehensive survey in which the firm’s 431-strong staff were asked to identify the areas of most concern to them regarding their health and well-being.
The findings unveiled eight key areas which employees, both men and women, rated as key to their well-being: cancer awareness, healthy eating, physical activity, weight management, smoking, alcohol, back pain and stress.
The campaign, funded by the Public Health Agency, places AG among 200 organisations currently being supported in their efforts to create a culture that promotes well-being among its workforce.
To kick off the Activ8 programme, staff will each be provided with a pedometer, to assist objectives towards weight management and increased physical activity - prime among those efforts is a new cycle to work scheme which has already been enthusiastically adopted.
This will be followed up with the provision of informative leaflets, posters and discount cards for employees at each AG site. It will then be complemented by sessions on cancer prevention, reducing alcohol intake, stopping smoking, diabetes awareness, steps to prevent back pain and even tips on safer driving.
Measures to combat stress will include presentations by experts on the subject, while staff will also be encouraged to read during break times and lunch, to embrace the theme ‘it’s good to talk,’ take part in anger awareness sessions – even join in on a ‘Random Acts of Kindness Day’.
Further sessions will also be held to concentrate on heart health, suicide prevention, reflexology, eczema, cholesterol, and a variety of mental health issues. Health Matters will also be promoting a balanced diet approach to assist in cancer prevention.
The 12 month effort will be complemented by a comprehensive social media campaign to keep staff abreast of events. Perks and rewards will include the chance to win special prizes like spa breaks and treatments.
Cathy Maguire, AG’s Heath, Safety and Environment Manager, said:
“The premise of the initiative is that the health & safety dial needs to be moved – with the well-being of the workforce being of equal importance to safety measures employed. It is also not simply a matter for each individual employee but is something AG is keen to pioneer as an employer mindset shift.
“Some of the improvements the company expect to see as a result of the initiative are improved morale, higher job satisfaction and stronger employee engagement. Employees moreover, will glean a more enlightened approach to their health, equipped with the tools to monitor and tackle potential areas of concern.
“AG takes the lives of our dedicated workforce very seriously. The company always aims to reward their loyalty, commitment and hard work with reciprocal benefits.”