Category five – Best commitment to work health and wellbeing
Shine Lawyer's wellbeing program, A Healthier YOU, aims to drive a holistic approach to wellbeing for their employees, and enable and support them to improve their overall health and embed a culture of wellbeing and safety into the organisation.
A Healthier YOU program provides targeted programs for employees based on four pillars:
- A healthier body (physical wellbeing)
- A healthier mind (mental health wellbeing)
- A healthier culture (leadership support towards healthy lifestyles)
- A healthier place (physical environment and workplace safety).
The framework develops awareness and knowledge, encourages open conversations, supports employees to look after themselves and reduces mental health stigma.
Since implementing the program four years ago, Shine Lawyers have seen a steady increase in wellbeing engagement scores and participation, along with increased employee assistance program use. Employees are reporting more incidents (raising awareness of potential risks), culture and morale have improved and consultation with wellbeing champions has increased. With ongoing support from their leadership team, a wellbeing focus has been incorporated into the Shine Lawyers employee lifecycle and leaders regularly check in with team members.
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I'm Melissa Hawkins. I'm the Wellbeing and Safety Advisor at Shine Lawyers and I've been here for almost five years. Shine Lawyers is one of Australia's largest litigation law firms.
We have 45 branches across Australia, and we have about 1,000 team members. Insights from EAP data, listening surveys, and incident reports highlighted the main risks at our organisation that included working with emotionally triggering clients and threatening clients, and just the nature of working in the legal industry.
We also identified the physical risk being a sedentary workplace and the musculoskeletal issues that revolve around that. So, we have key initiatives that are part of our Healthier Body, part of our Healthier You programme at the moment.
So, our Healthier You Step Challenge is one, which has a movement and connection focus. We have regular ergonomic assessments, and this is in conjunction with desk stretch cards, so people regularly stretch throughout the day, either by themselves or in groups.
We do run Healthier Body webinars as well and we have a Healthier You newsletter, which is monthly, that targets physical exercise and nutrition. So, although we've seen a high increase in the number of incidents that have been recorded, so 443% increase since the time of implementation two years ago, we've had no psychosocial injuries and no workers' compensation claims from a psychological perspective.
One of the biggest recommendations I'd make is to get support from leadership. So that was gained from the start, and they're updated at least once a year about the programmes that we've been delivering and any improvements that should be made.
The most rewarding part of my job is making a difference and having a positive impact on someone's health. So, something as simple as making a small adjustment to a workstation to reduce discomfort, or driving behaviour change to improve someone's lifestyle.
It would be an honour to win a Work Well Award. I've been on this journey with wellbeing at Shine Lawyers for the past five years, and to be acknowledged for my work here would be very rewarding.