Three-quarters of UK employers see women’s health as a concern
Aon plc (NYSE: AON), a leading global professional services firm, has found that UK employers see women’s health as a key priority in their health and wellbeing strategies, with nearly three-quarters of employers (73 percent) reporting women’s health as a concern.
Employers view menopause training and policies as their biggest aim for health benefits next year. Overall, 38 percent of employers are planning to implement menopause training and 40 percent are focusing on a menopause policy.
Aon’s UK Benefits and Trends Survey 2022 shows that employers’ largest concerns overall are stress (96 percent), depression and anxiety (89 percent), women’s health (73 percent), musculoskeletal conditions (67 percent) and men’s health (67 percent).
Rachel Western, principal, Health and Risk, at Aon, said: “Awareness about women’s health at work is shifting – and not before time. The issues women may experience throughout their lives – fertility, post-natal depression, perimenopause and menopause or hidden conditions such as endometriosis – have become far more widely discussed in the media and HR communities. Many employers are spearheading a change, raising awareness and supporting employees so that women’s concerns are less likely to be masked.”
Opening up conversations on the issue can make a difference. In an informal client survey, 67 percent of line manager attendees at a menopause workshop felt “fairly uncomfortable” having menopause conversations with employees, although they recognised that providing support would help productivity, retention, inclusivity and team success. However, after the workshop, 100 percent of attendees said they felt it was useful to have better conversations around menopause.
Rachel Western continued:
“From our perspective, we’re seeing employers nurturing a better health strategy for all employees to build a more resilient workforce, while understanding more about the differing needs of diverse employees. It’s important to analyse, identify and address key employee health risks to support planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of health policies, programmes and projects.
“By taking a step back to understand core issues, it’s possible for employers to increase effectiveness of health interventions, while promoting equity and equality across genders. This could include not only benefit design, but also offering supportive tools, communication and engagement, as well as training and education for all employees.”
Aon’s annual UK Benefits and Trends Survey shows trends in employer benefits strategies, highlighting issues experienced by employers and employees. In its 12th year, the survey took into account the experiences of 253 HR, employee benefit and reward professionals from across the UK in a variety of sectors. Among respondents, 17 percent stated their organisation employs more than 5,000 people; 33 percent employ between 1,001 and 5,000 people; 13 percent employ 501 to 1,000 people; 10 percent employ 251 to 500, and 27 percent employ fewer than 250 people.
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