A new poll by Employers Holdings Inc. finds that small businesses, which employ more than half of the American workforce, have been slow to embrace the trend of creating healthier workplace environments.
Employers, a holding company with a number of insurance subsidiaries, says the role of workplace design on employee wellness has become an increasingly hot topic in corporate America, bolstered by studies that suggest sitting for extended periods of time, poor ergonomics in the workplace and fatigue on the job can lead to potential health issues.
“The nature of work in this country has changed dramatically over the past two decades,” said David Quezada, VP of loss control at Employers. “Jobs have become more sedentary and there are fewer opportunities for workers to get up and move around.”
Small businesses need to become more proactive about creating workplace environments and enforcing policies that promote employee health and wellbeing,” Quezada said.
The survey of 506 small businesses conducted in October 2014 looked at ergonomics in small business workplaces and found that more than three-quarters of small businesses don’t provide non-traditional seating options such as stand-up desks, treadmill desks or balance balls to employees. More than one-quarter of small business owners surveyed said their employees typically remain seated for more than an hour at a time.
Another trend that emerged in the survey is that small business employees do not take sufficient time away from work.
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