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Tips to keep employees fit as they work remotely

Tips to improve employees wellbeing during remote work

With the spread of the novel coronavirus affecting everything from international travel to the availability of a mere hand sanitiser, mitigating COVID-19 across the world has become a growing concern. That’s why organizations across the world are mandating or recommending their employees to work remotely.

Employees do enjoy working from the comfort of their own home, foregoing their commute in favour of more sleep, family or exercise time. But, working remotely is a double-edged sword — sure, employees get to stay home, but it can be difficult to focus on work and be active at the same time.

Working from home can present a unique set of challenges, especially when it comes to employees’ health. The abundance of alluring snacks in the kitchen, the lack of social stimulation and the temptation to work in an ergonomically unsound position, like in bed, can all sabotage an otherwise virtuous employee’s best health intentions.

Here are a few tips that can help your employees stay fit, healthy and on task while working from home:

Set up a designated workspace

Use a space in the home that’s designated solely for work. A place that they can associate with their job and leave when they are off the clock — that means getting off the couch, and definitely out of bed.

Choose a good chair 

Encourage the employees to invest in a comfortable, ergonomically sound chair that will keep them properly aligned throughout the day.

Wellbeing in the workplace starts with the right seat!

Promote standing desks

What about burning up to 350 calories a day by simply standing? 

A research report shows that by standing instead of sitting at a desk for 2.5 hours of the day employees can burn calories, improve their health and reduce medical expenses. 

So encouraging employees to use a standing desk can help give their back a break and reduce their overall long-term mortality risk.

Get up every hour and get out at least once a day

It’s easy for employees to get stuck in their seats, especially when they feel comfortable in their space. So, encourage employees to set a timer or use an app that can remind them to get up and stretch once every hour.

Schedule workouts

When employees create their daily schedule, they can use the flexibility of working from home to their advantage. Encourage them to schedule timely workouts either during lunch or after working hours. 

Employee benefits include workouts as well

Walk and Talk

Have a meeting scheduled? Instead of sitting on the couch, ask your employees to take the meeting outside and walk around while they discuss things. This way they will also get a dose of healthy vitamin D and exposure to natural sunlight, which boosts productivity.

Get showered and dressed just like going to the office

Instead of staying in casual clothes all day, employees should put on an outfit they’d likely wear to the office. Feeling competent isn’t just about productivity: Research has shown that self-efficacy has a positive impact on health behaviours, including weight control and exercise.

Promote online Health challenges

Promoting online health challenges is another way to keep your employees active and healthy while working remotely. With a single cohesive healthcare engagement platform like ekincare, use the power of AI and analytics to engage and monitor your employees' health in the best way possible.

HR professionals should remember that not every employee actually wants to work from home, a shift that can be stressful for some. As companies increasingly mandate that many employees must work from home during the coronavirus outbreak, it’s key that they communicate as much as possible and help employees struggling with the change.

Prachi Bharadwaj is an experienced Marketing Communications Executive with a demonstrated history of working in the health tech & higher education industries.