Employers have a duty to look after the health, safety and welfare of their employees and with workplace stress being a common issue in today's working world, some employers have implemented innovative ways to help keep stress under control.
Slides, aquariums, massages and dog bowls now feature in some office environments. For those employers that want a slightly more traditional method, a Stress At Work Policy is a good first step. Such a policy should set out how an employee can get support if they are feeling stressed, how stress at work issues may be resolved and how sickness absence should be dealt with.
Google's headquarters in Zurich has a massage room, aquarium and a slide to deliver engineers smoothly and quickly to the canteen. Deloitte's Amsterdam office was designed with one empty room on each floor for employees to put what they wanted in them - most have gone for games such as table football. At LinkedIn's Californian HQ there is a music room, stocked with keyboards, drums, guitars and audio equipment. And allowing employees to bring their pets to work is increasingly common. So when did our offices turn into playgrounds, and does this represent the new way of working?