The importance of including wellbeing in the Employee Value Proposition (EVP)

Do you know what your organisation’s ‘Employee Value Proposition’ is? Can you outline the benefits offered to your employees in compensation for their time and hard work? We all aim to motivate, retain and attract the best people into our organisations, however an EVP which does not address wellbeing is unlikely to meaningfully engage individuals.

In the exchange between companies and colleagues, we need to be able to demonstrate genuine care and consideration. How do we do this?

Research from Aviva found that employees value a better work-life balance over traditional employee benefits. Most interestingly it found that if employees could choose any benefit that they didn’t currently have, the majority agreed that a wellness allowance which encouraged them to prioritise their physical, emotional and mental health, would top their list.

The employee desire for wellness and a better work-life balance should be seen as an opportunity for employers to include wellbeing at the heart of their EVP. By serving these needs, employers can look to attract and retain the best talent as well as transform their workforce into a place that’s productive and successful. This article explores why you should include wellbeing in your employee value proposition and how this can be achieved.

What is an Employee Value Proposition (EVP)?

The Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is essentially what a company offers its employees in return for the work they do. A comprehensive EVP will cover salary, perks, values, and experiences.

To be successful, an EVP can’t just be the benefits in isolation. It should create a workplace community of shared beliefs, putting into practice your mission and values as a business and helping to create an overall culture that’s unique to your business.

Communicating this effectively internally and externally as well as delivering what you promise is equally important. Not only will this entice new talent but it will decrease employee turnover and increase company profits.

How does including wellbeing improve your EVP?

Including wellbeing into an Employee Value Proposition offers several clear benefits:

  • Attracts top talent: Recruiter Robert Walters found that 88% of people consider a company’s wellbeing offering when they are looking for a job. In addition, 86% of employers believe that mental health benefits are essential for recruitment according to Headspace’s Fifth Annual Workforce Attitudes Toward Mental Health report.
  • Improves employee retention: In a research piece for the Financial Times, insurers Towergate Health and Protection, found that staff loyalty and retention were seen as the main advantages to investing in health and wellbeing support.
  • Increases staff engagement: Employees who feel that their wellbeing is supported naturally become more invested in their work, collaborate more openly and effectively, and actively contribute to company goals. A study from Gallup found that wellbeing directly affects employee engagement, which is one of the key indicators of career happiness.
  • Boosts productivity: Research by Oxford University's Saïd Business School found that happy workers are 13% more productive. Employees in British Telecoms’ contact centres worked faster and converted more calls to sales when they were happier, without having to work longer hours.
  • Strengthens brand reputation: Marketing Week dedicated a whole article to how staff wellbeing was the secret to brand health, citing Richer Sounds and Patagonia as brands that have put employees over profit and found significant success in doing so.

What strategies can be used to develop an Employee Value Proposition that prioritises employee health and wellbeing?

The following steps will help you to develop and deliver an EVP that prioritises employee health and wellbeing:

Step 1: Assess where you are now

You will need to review your existing wellbeing provision including whether it is valued by your employees. A workplace wellbeing audit based on workforce analytics, such as sickness and staff turnover, as well as an up-to-date employee wellbeing survey will give you a good picture of where you are now and what employees would like. This prevents you implementing measures that are seen as a nod to wellbeing without being fully committed.

Step 2: Develop a strategic wellbeing framework

Once you have a sense of what works, what doesn’t and where you need to be heading, you can begin creating a wellbeing strategy that aligns with your company culture and values.

The strategy should contain specific objectives such as reducing employee stress, improving work-life balance, increasing awareness of mental health support resources. It should address the physical, mental, emotional, and financial wellbeing of employees and involve initiatives designed to help you meet your objectives. Crucially, your strategy must be measurable so that you can track your progress to understand if your wellbeing framework is working or if any adjustments need to be made.

Step 3: Offer flexible, inclusive and relevant benefits

Once your wellbeing framework is in place, you should seek out benefits that help your EVP deliver the wellbeing strategy.

It is best to offer diverse benefit options that your will employees value (and will actually use) to help support your employees’ physical, mental and financial wellbeing. This could take the form of a wellness allowance, mental health support (such as a counselling service), flexible working arrangements (hybrid and remote options) or an internal network of Mental Health First Aiders.

Holding focus groups with a representative selection of employees will allow them to discuss which options will be most valued and demonstrate that you are committed to making it work.

Step 4: Promote your wellbeing-centric EVP to the workforce

Once you've crafted your EVP, don't let it remain a secret!

An EVP must be a living, breathing part of your company culture. As well as clearly articulating your commitment to employee health and wellbeing, you should actively promote your relevant wellness provisions through an internal awareness campaign. This might involve posts on your intranet, leadership briefings, office posters, internal emails or Wellness Lunch and Learn sessions.

It's also a good idea to weave this focus into your external marketing, highlighting it in job postings, social media content, and your company website. Encourage your employees to share their positive wellbeing experiences, letting their advocacy organically amplify your EVP.

How Altruist can help

Over the last 10 years, Altruist Enterprises has helped over 500 organisations identify and address mental wellbeing to increase their employees’ welfare and productivity. We can help at every stage of developing an EVP that puts your employees’ wellbeing front and centre. This can include reviewing your current provision, helping you develop a well-crafted benefits package and communicating the package effectively to your staff.

We can ensure that your culture is committed to wellbeing by training managers and staff in preventing, spotting and addressing mental health issues.

If you want to discuss how we can help, drop us a message, call us on 0121 271 0550 or email us

Sarah Hughes

Sarah is an HR consultant, executive coach and team development facilitator who worked in operational Human Resources for over 20 years. Sarah enjoys working in organisations on all aspects of employing, engaging and inspiring people to do their best work for the benefit of everyone.

Sarah is a member of the Altruist Enterprises Advisory Board and the Operations Director for Barrow & Parker HR Consultancy.

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