Manage Wellbeing at the Workplace: Employer Responsibilities

A group of employees enjoying wellbeing at the workplace

Wellbeing at the workplace affects every employee. Employers' responsibilities include caring for their workforce's physical and mental health. By adopting wellbeing strategies and meeting legal requirements, employers enjoy many advantages: better employee retention, increased engagement, improved productivity, and enhanced business performance.

Although promoting wellbeing poses challenges, employers can address these hurdles with success. This article looks at the responsibilities of employers in creating a healthy and supportive work environment.

What is Wellbeing at the Workplace and Why is it Important?

Taking care of employees' physical, mental, and emotional health contributes to the success of any organisation. This is what workplace wellbeing is all about. Employers can enhance individual productivity, job satisfaction and quality of life by creating a positive environment, leading to a happier, healthier, and more engaged workforce.

Workplace and Wellbeing: Legal Responsibilities of Employers

Employers are expected by law to do all reasonably possible to protect their employees' health, safety, and well-being at work.

Health and Safety at Work Act

One of the most significant legal standards employers and professionals working to safeguard wellbeing should be aware of is the Health and Safety at Work Act of 1974. While there is no existing "wellbeing law" this specifies a common law duty of care.

Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations

Another piece of relevant legislation is the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, which requires organisations to carry out 'suitable and sufficient evaluation' of the risks to their employees' health and safety at work. This means employers with five or more employees must identify health concerns in their staff, for example, by doing a risk assessment. It should then take actions to avoid or lessen workplace risk and keep a record of the evaluation in writing.

Employers can also find further relevant guidelines in the HSE's Management Standards and the ISO 45003 guidance to ensure they are encouraging positive mental health at work. You can read more about the ISO 45003 guidance in our Knowledge Bank. You can keep scrolling to understand better how to comply with an employer's legal responsibility.

Compliance with Legal Responsibilities

Employers have a legal responsibility to promote employee wellbeing. To follow regulations, they must manage employee health and wellness in the workplace. It's essential to focus on compliance while enhancing employee wellbeing.

Regular Health and Wellbeing Assessments

Employers need to check on the health and wellbeing of their employees. They can do this by asking employees questions and conducting assessments to understand how everyone is doing. By gathering this information, employers can figure out what they need to do to help make things better for their employees. This can lead to the creation of better strategies that address the needs of employees and improve their wellbeing.

Ensuring Safe and Healthy Working Conditions

Employers should make sure that their workers have a safe and healthy environment to work in. This helps the employees feel better and be more productive. Employers can ensure employees don't feel pressured to come to work when they're sick. This is called presenteeism. Employers should also provide the workforce with sufficient opportunities for rest. Employees who feel good are likelier to stay with the company and do a good job.

Values and Principles to Promote Wellness and Wellbeing in the Workplace

Promoting employee wellbeing goes beyond legal responsibilities. It requires establishing a supportive working environment. Organisations need workplace empathy, inclusion, and support to foster employee wellbeing.

Employers can create a healthy work environment with a holistic approach to employee wellbeing. Consider aligning the work environment with the organisation's core values, promoting physical and mental health, work-life balance, and wellbeing. The organisation's culture and principles are vital to employee retention and wellbeing.

Physical Health and Good Lifestyle Choices

Promoting physical health is essential in fostering employee wellbeing and functionality. Encourage employers to make good lifestyle choices to support the physical health of employees. Many organisations are investing in health promotion and wellness initiatives. These include onsite fitness facilities, healthy food options, and wellness programs.

Mental Health and Stress Management

Taking care of our mental health is essential, especially at work. Companies should prioritise it by providing resources and programs to help manage stress and other challenges. Training for managers to support employee mental health helps promote a healthy work environment. Companies can help employees feel and perform better by focusing on employee wellbeing. 

Building Empathy and a Positive Work Environment

Companies need to create a happy and healthy workplace for their employees. By making the work environment an empathetic, caring, and supportive place, employers can help their workers feel better. This can help keep employees happy and motivated to do their job well.

Encouraging Personal Growth and Skill Development

Companies should help their employees grow and learn new skills. This not only helps the employees feel better about themselves, but it also helps them do better work. When companies invest in their employees' growth, it benefits both the employees and the company. It helps keep employees happy and motivated to stay with the company, which in turn helps the company function better.

Empowering Line Managers to Promote Employee Wellbeing

Supervisors and managers are crucial in supporting their employees' mental health and wellbeing at work. Employers can help them by giving them training on how to respond to mental health issues and build resilience. Regular communication between supervisors and employees has a positive impact on employee wellbeing. Promoting open communication creates a healthy and safe work environment for everyone.

The Benefits of Managing Employee Wellbeing

Ensuring the wellbeing of employees is crucial for any organisation to succeed. By prioritising employee wellbeing, companies can enjoy many benefits.

Improved Employee Resilience, Retention and Engagement

Having a happy and healthy workforce is vital for any organisation. It not only helps employee engagement but can also save a lot of money by reducing the costs of hiring and training new staff. This is because when employees feel valued and supported, they are more likely to stay with the company. Focusing on worker wellbeing helps keep talent in the organisation. A positive work environment helps employees feel engaged, satisfied, and able to cope with any challenges that come their way.

Enhanced Productivity and Business Performance

Employers' focus on employee wellbeing helps workers stay healthy and productive. This means that employees are less likely to show up to work when they're sick or burned out, which can hurt the quality of their work.

Employers can create an environment where employees feel engaged by focusing on wellbeing. This can lead to a positive company culture, which can help the business perform better.

Workforce Health and Wellbeing: The Financial Benefits

Making the wellbeing of employees a top priority affects an organisation's financial health.

Effective management helps address the economic impact of retention and turnover. Enhancing employee wellbeing through investments in wellbeing initiatives can improve human resources and workforce efficiency. This can contribute to the financial stability and sustainability of the organisation. Employee wellbeing is critical in organisational financial strategy and future work dynamics.

Wellbeing in the workplace enhances a businesses finances

How To Improve Employee Wellbeing Despite Challenges?

Employers can take steps to improve employee wellbeing and resilience despite challenges. To achieve this, they can create a wellbeing strategy that aligns with the workforce's needs. You can find out employee needs through regular communication and assessments. Creating a working environment that supports physical and mental health is also essential.

Using health promotion and wellness initiatives can further enhance employee wellbeing and engagement. Conducting work surveys can provide valuable insights into the workforce's health and wellness.


Employee wellbeing is essential for both ethical and business reasons. Employers focus on their employees' engagement, retention, and productivity. Create a positive work environment by encouraging personal growth and empowering line managers to support wellbeing. Additionally, employers must follow legal responsibilities, like providing safe working conditions and conducting regular health assessments.

Promoting workplace wellbeing is challenging. Identify and address challenges to ensure the success of the employee wellbeing strategy. Employers improve employee wellbeing by creating a culture that values and supports their workforce. Caring for employee wellness helps employees and businesses grow.

Further Reading

Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace: Understanding the ISO 45003 Guidance

Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace: Understanding the ISO 45003 Guidance

Health and Wellbeing

Learn about the ISO 45003 guidelines and how it is helping organisations to improve psychological health and safety in the workplace.

Techniques for Improving Mental Health and Wellbeing

Techniques for Improving Mental Health and Wellbeing

Health and Wellbeing

Discover effective techniques to improve your mental health and wellbeing. From cognitive reframing to mindfulness and sleep routines, prioritise your mental wellbeing and promote positive emotions.

A Guide to Health and Wellbeing: Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

A Guide to Health and Wellbeing: Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

Health and Wellbeing

Explore the physical, mental, and social aspects of health and wellbeing as we provide some answers to commonly asked questions.

How To Promote Physical Wellbeing?

How To Promote Physical Wellbeing?

Health and Wellbeing

Discover how to promote physical wellbeing through healthy lifestyle choices and supportive workplaces. Improve health and happiness.


Bethany Wesson

Bethany Wesson

Bethany is a freelance content writer and has produced articles for the Commodious Knowledge Bank since 2023. She has written about various health and safety topics, from asbestos to mindful business practices.

  • Health and Safety
  • Mental Health
  • Wellbeing
  • Physical Wellbeing
  • Business
  • Mental Health Awareness
  • Management