Shire Health & Wellbeing Insights

Employee wellbeing: The time to act is right now

November 25, 2020

Employee wellbeing: The time to act is right now

The pandemic has marked a change in everyone’s working and living habits.

At Shire Health & Wellbeing, we have seen businesses thinking long and hard about what they need from their employee benefit packages. The need for empathy, communication and products tailored to employers and their employees’ has never been greater.

A 15% increase in demand for Business Health Insurance

Before Covid-19, there were already concerns about NHS waiting times. As the pandemic took hold, those concerns intensified. 

NHS statistics reveal the “brutal impact” of the pandemic on healthcare services. Council Chair Dr Chaand Nagpaul of the British Medical Association said: “Worryingly, more than two thirds of doctors who responded to a recent BMA survey said they had either little or no confidence that the expected demand could be properly managed.”

Increased waiting times and a lack of capacity to provide care for those in need has meant a spike in demand for Private Medical Insurance (PMI). Here at Shire Health & Wellbeing, throughout 2020 we have seen an increase in new business enquiries, and our renewal rate is higher than ever.

But the focus isn’t just on PMI. Other business insurance products, such as income protection and life insurance, are in much higher demand now compared with a year ago. They are being requested as an extra safety blanket, given the uncertainty this year has brought to even the steadiest of industries.

Growing awareness in this new world

No one likes thinking about death. However, the pandemic has meant people are more aware of their own mortality. 

This growing awareness is being felt in the business world, too. Businesses are increasingly thinking about where their priorities lie: senior leaders or large numbers of a team getting ill at the same time would create huge challenges.

The increased need to protect employees may have been a response to the pandemic, but the value of employee health and wellbeing cover will continue going forward, helping to increase productivity, attract and retain talent, and boost morale. 

According to AON’s UK Benefits & Trends Survey 2020, the majority of companies believe their employee value proposition positively impacts employee engagement by 77%, retention by 76%, and recruitment by 78%.

Supporting employees’ mental health and wellbeing

Uncertainty breeds anxiety, and these are uncertain times.

Businesses are aware of the impact this uncertainty is having on employees’ mental health and wellbeing, so as well as PMI and Income Protection, the uptake of mental health and wellbeing programmes have also seen an increase.

Through schemes such as Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs), business leaders can help their staff to manage their lives, and reduce the toll on business performance and productivity. EAPs give employees access to counselling, legal advice and financial support – all the tools they need to manage issues and improve mental health.

The value of boosting employee morale

Everyone needs a boost – especially now. An increase in demand for employee perks suggests businesses are looking for ways to reward staff and boost team morale.

With teams either working from home or reduced numbers in the office, our working lives have become disjointed. The right employee benefits help level the playing field and bring value to all staff members. From claiming money back on dental costs to having 24/7 access to wellbeing support, the right employee benefits package can help bring your team closer together and boost morale.

Employee Benefits provide a wide range of services including access to counselling, money management, family support, GP services and mental health support. Additionally, staff can also access exciting discounts, such as gym memberships, reduced cinema tickets, money off retailers and eating out – which should help to alleviate at least some financial stresses in the run up to Christmas.

At Shire Health & Wellbeing, we offer two employee benefit portals:

  1. Cash Plan Scheme: From just £4.33 per person per month, employers can help staff budget for their healthcare expenses. A cash plan scheme lets employees claim money back on prescriptions, dental visits and opticians’ fees, as well as many more benefits.
  2. Connect Benefit: For just £1 a month, this intuitive app gives employees’ 24/7 access to health and wellbeing services, as well as money off their daily spending. It’s a cost-effective solution that offers real value.

Now is the right time to evaluate your employee benefits package.

The pandemic has forced businesses to shift their mindsets, so there has never been a better time to consider the benefit package you have in place and give your employees the cover they deserve. Before health insurance premiums peak, why not challenge Shire to find you a better deal?

Whatever the size of your business or budget, get in touch with the team today to find out more.


Don’t just take our word for it… 

“I have always found Shire Health & Wellbeing to be very professional and quick to respond when dealing with our account.  Their communication is of a very high standard and they strive to proactively inform me of any health and wellbeing campaigns that are right for our business. In my opinion it’s a great weight off employees shoulders knowing that they have health insurance in these uncertain times.” – Verity Patch, HR Officer

Latest Blog

Support your staff during lockdown and beyond

The lockdown feels a little different this time round, with vaccines providing the light at the end of the tunnel. For employers...

Want to speak directly with a member of the Shire Health & Wellbeing team?

Give us a call today, we would love to discuss your requirements.