Huntsman demonstrates care for employees’ health through fitness benefits

Huntsman fitness benefitsWith a diverse workforce that spans various ages, backgrounds and lifestyles, tailoring house Huntsman demonstrates its care for its employees’ health and wellbeing through its fitness benefits.

The organisation has 60 employees across its Savile Row, London and New York locations. Its client managers and tailors spend a lot of time on their feet and working onsite, while its office staff are more desk-based and often work remotely.

As its shop workers spend most of their time standing on their feet, which can be physically taxing, it initially offered on-site pilates sessions to help them stay healthy and flexible. However, these became less popular over time and ended up with a less than 10% participation rate.

It then decided to partner with gym membership firm Hussle to enable its UK employees to have discounted access to a range of gyms, pools and spas. This initiative was met with enthusiasm: 25% of its workforce signed up within the first month.

Because stress and burnout have been challenges in the past, the organisation wanted to find an option that most people would like to use, while also working within limited budgetary constraints, explains Barbara Solis, HR manager at Huntsman.

“I was aware of the flexibility Hussle could bring to our employees,” she says. “The incentive is cost-effective and our employees have the potential to access an outlet which allows them to release stress within their day-to-day roles. Thanks to the variety it brings, we can support a full range of fitness preferences, whether someone wants to go and pump some iron in the gym, go for a swim, or even relax in the sauna for 15 minutes after work.”

The organisation also offers private medical insurance, an employee assistance programme, regular training and development, and quarterly social events. It regularly surveys employees to understand what is important to them regarding benefits, which helps it tailor offerings to meet their needs effectively. For example, if an employee says they are stressed during an appraisal or one-to-one meeting, it is suggested they look at the fitness benefits on offer as one way of supporting staff in coping with their work and personal lives.

Supporting wellbeing in a way that works for everyone can be challenging, but employees appreciate having access to a range of activities that fit in with the different lifestyles that they lead, and that listening to them and asking for their input can go a long way, says Solis.

“We need to let people know that it’s okay for them to take the time to look after themselves. Building a culture of support and balance is definitely key. We’ve seen that all perks in relation to [wellbeing] are very high on people’s preference lists. After all, happy employees are more productive and make for a happier workplace. We also advertise our benefits within our recruitment processes, as this can be a decisive factor when prospective employees decide whether to join,” she concludes.