Our companies invest in initiatives to improve the health of their workforce and to mitigate any health and safety risks. This contributes to employee productivity and reduces the costs of people taking time off work due to illness.

As an office-based business, the main health and safety risks to our workforce are injuries connected to workstation ergonomics and work-related stress.

Ensuring our workstations follow good practice design reduces problems such as repetitive strain injury or back problems.

Our companies assess the risk of work-related stress through regular staff surveys and by monitoring issues raised via our Right to Speak helpline, Employee Assistance Programs and during exit interviews.

Initiatives to combat workplace stress vary by company but include:

  • Employee Assistance Programs – a source of confidential advice, support and counselling.
  • Flexible benefit programs, including subsidised childcare.
  • Flexible work arrangements enabling people to work part-time or from home.
  • Medical checks and health screening.
  • Training on stress and time management.
  • Sabbaticals and career breaks.

Examples from our companies include:

  • Burson-Marsteller (US) hosts an annual health fair providing health screening, blood pressure checks, advice on dental stress reduction, acupuncture, massage therapy and nutrition.
  • Ogilvy New York has an on-site full service medical centre, on-site fitness centre and 50 company-owned bikes that employees can borrow. Its H2O program of wellness initiatives cover financial, health and emotional fitness, as well as physical fitness.
  • Team Detroit offers on-site fitness classes, and hosts weekly Weight Watchers meetings. The cafeteria offers reduced-calorie meal options to help employees eat more healthily.

We collect health and safety data through our financial reporting system. In 2010 there were 327,656 days lost due to sickness, including injuries and stress, equivalent to 3.2 days per employee.