Cycling to work has become increasingly popular over the last few years. From the influence of major sporting events like the Olympics and Tour de Yorkshire to people becoming more aware of their carbon footprint, cycling to work is encouraging more and more people to get on two wheels. With an upturn in the number of people cycling to work, businesses are seeing their teams becoming a lot healthier and happier. With an increase in cycling comes a small portion of responsibility for the employer to be able to support their team.
Facilitating your team
If your team have decided to take the pledge for a greener and healthier journey by cycling to work, as an employer you should do everything you can to facilitate and take care of your team when they travel to and from the workplace. When cycling to work, your team can encounter hazards, such as potholes or obscured signs. As their employer, you can encourage your team to report this to your local highway department, most of which have a simple to use online reporting procedure.
As an employer, you can’t take care of weather mishaps, you can, however, support your team whilst they’re out and about. Supporting your team’s healthy habit at the end of their journey after cycling to work by making sure there is somewhere to securely park and lock up their bikes is quite essential. Making sure that your workplace has a designated, secure area and a bike rack will help demonstrate to your team that you take cycling to work seriously.
It might also be in your office’s best interest to make the internal workplace suitable for those cycling to work. Instead of your team feeling uncomfortable after their journey, having showers or spaces to change as well as somewhere for your team to store their bags and cycle wear will be a great advantage for your team and will also help persuade other members to start cycling to work.
Joining a scheme
Cycling to work is not only a benefit for your team. As a business, you can join a cycle to work scheme, a tax exemption initiative first introduced by the government in 1999. The aim was to encourage healthier journeys to work as well as reduce environmental pollution. This scheme allows employers to loan cycles and cyclist safety equipment to their employees as a tax-free benefit, which is great for both you and your team.
Aside from the obvious health benefits cycling to work provides, it’s also a great advantage to both employers and employees where health insurance is involved. Many health insurers provide policies that encourage activity for a healthier and happier team. These types of policies offer incentives where members of staff can gather rewards through their policy by being more active to get access to lower premiums and lots of other perks such as cashback and discounts.
As with improving your facilities, joining a cycle to work scheme is a great way to demonstrate your commitment to cycling to work as well as the environment; showing that you care about even the smallest things like this will help to increase your team’s productivity and ensure staff retention.
Getting the team involved
It’s all well and good that your business has the facilities and a cycle to work scheme to hand, but the benefits become lost if you’re not shouting about it for your team to join in. There are many ways that your business and top team can encourage members of staff to cycle to work for better health and a better environment. You, your employees and, of course, your business can become a part of a local cycling club or bike share scheme to make cycling to work a whole lot easier. Schemes and clubs often offer advice and tips on cycling so you and your team can get clued up on the ins and outs of cycling to work safely.
As an employer, you can also encourage your work cyclists to set up a bike group, as having an experienced group can be a great way to informally motivate the rest of your team to take up cycling to work. These cycling groups can also be a great team building exercise where you can organise cycling based events to coincide with National Bike to Work Day on May 17th. There is, however, nothing better being a role model. Lead your team by example and get on your bike for your business and start cycling to work.
At Protectus, we know just how important it is to look after your team’s health as well as your own. Private Company Health Insurance is one of the best ways to ensure that your team stays healthy and happy for a productive business. Get in touch for business health insurance guidance that will take care of your team now and for the years to come.