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Wellbeing from the feet up...

01 March 2017

UK country manager, Martin Stevens, explains how Ejendals is adding value to its Footstop pressure mapping service in a bid to deliver wellbeing messages to customers’ employees.

My team has carried out pressure mapping with thousands of people and what has become clear is the high level of engagement not only during the process but also long after we have packed up and headed for home.

2017 is the year we start maximising our unique opportunity to deliver wellbeing messages before, during and after Footstop pressure mapping as part of our commitment to help Great Britain to Work Well, with our focus being to reduce the financial and personal cost of musculoskeletal disorders. Health and Safety statistics confirm that despite changes in legislation, working practises, policies and procedures and training more has to be done to reduce the problems associated with MSDs.

Work Related Muscular Skeletal Disorder

The Health Statistics confirm that WRMSDs, while not life threatening, can impair the life quality and mobility of large numbers of the working population. The Labour Force Survey statistics over the last 10 years demonstrate that a significant number of WRMSDs are attributed to working practices across many diverse industries and occupations. WRMSDs accounted for 41% of the prevalence of all work related ill health in Great Britain in 2015/16. WRMSDs working days lost (which place burdens on employers) account for 34% of all days lost due to work related illness in 2015/16 in Great Britain.

The industries and occupations that have demonstrated the highest rates of musculoskeletal disorders have also remained similar; with industries with active physical work such as the construction industry or skilled trade occupations those with the highest rates. Examining the prevalence in terms of age and gender, the overall rate for males and females is similar for all WRMSDs. However the age ranges 45-54 and 55+ tend to have the highest rates for both genders.

WRMSDs cost UK Plc 8.8million working days lost. During 2015/16 a total of 176,000 cases were reported, equating to 550 individuals per 100,000 of the working population.

As a team we are in a position to make a positive difference via Footstop scanning to increase the comfort and wellbeing of employees. We provide comfort by reducing the pressure points on the feet and providing arch support. According to our customers this alone improves a sense of wellbeing as the comfort can be felt at the time of mapping but we are going a massive step further to use our interaction with employees to deliver the wellbeing messages on behalf of our customers. We can do as little or as much as our customers want.  What we do is simply deliver the wellbeing messages of the company to the individuals we are working with. 

Briefly we can provide a pre, during and post mapping added value service in addition to facilitating training through our distributors on the relationship between chronic pain and stress. Prior to mapping we ask the employee to complete a short customer survey on lifestyle factors as determined by the customer. We also display our pop up banners which has the intention of prompting employees to question themselves regarding how much more they could be doing to increase their wellbeing in line with the customer’s wellbeing initiatives.

We know that when we are conducting our mapping service we have the full and undivided attention of the employee. Not only that we are discussing issues connected to the wellbeing on an individual basis. Our on screen pre and post pressure mapping provides a visual cue for employees to literally see the difference pressure relieving insoles make. It seems like an opportunity too good to miss to share more wellbeing information to promote behavioural change in the workforce particularly since we have a high level of employee engagement. Employees are really interested in feeling and seeing the difference at the same as the scan take place.

Any relevant leaflets or information the company want us to hand over is given along with our print out of their pressure mapping results.  We can also provide posters for the public areas and staff rooms in order to maximise the opportunity to engage with the employees at a time when their interest is still high.

Christine Black, director of The Wellbeing Portal has been instrumental in highlighting how our engagement with individuals presents an excellent opportunity not to be missed: “Ejendals has focused on the individual’s wellbeing rather than a general footwear supply initiative," Christine observes. "Their Footstop pressure mapping service presents an almost unique opportunity to support change due to the high level of employee engagement enjoyed during and after the process has been completed. Martin and his team are also very aware of how stress and chronic pain are interlinked and it is refreshing to see how they are promoting initiatives to raise awareness in health & safety teams and in occupational health as part of Great Britain Working Well.”

Christine Black from The Wellbeing Portal will be attending The Health and Safety Event at Birmingham NEC on March 22nd. Visit stand C10 to discuss the relationship of stress on chronic pain conditions and what you can do about it.