Dubai – The UAE’s massive push for happiness is rubbing off on the workplace as companies and organisations throughout the Emirates are implementing various wellness programmes for employees as a matter of top priority.
In recognition of such initiatives, MEED, the Middle East’s leading business intelligence brand, has announced this year’s finalists of the annual Daman Corporate Health Awards, the only initiative recognising UAE-based organisations for their corporate health initiatives.
“This year’s finalists have shown exceptional commitment to making employee wellness a priority, and they are commended for that. Here in the UAE, we are just beginning to see this movement gain traction and we hope that by highlighting the achievements of this year’s best entries, they can influence and inspire other organisations to make wellness an integral part of their corporate culture,” says Dr. Michael Bitzer, Chief Executive Officer, National Health Insurance Company – Daman, headline sponsor of the awards.
In the competition for the Workplace of the Year award are four well-known organisations who consider corporate health and employee wellbeing as critical to their performance, productivity and profitability.
One of the finalists, Schneider Electric, understood the absolute importance of having energised and healthy employees who feel happy at the workplace and believe that effectiveness at work and wellbeing are linked. “Our ambition and objective is to provide our employees with a safe and attractive work environment where they will feel at their best, unleash their creativity & potential and make the most of their energy. We want to ensure that our teams are not afraid of stress because they are trained, they feel safe and happy in Schneider Electric,” says Shabbir Ali, Director of Dubai Regional Distribution Centre, Schneider Electric, which set in place 5 pillars for well-being designed to offer our employees better working conditions and foster wellbeing.
Among Schneider Electric’s initiatives included a move to a new facility which has significantly increased the collaboration and engagement of the employees as well as provided more space to everyone. The company’s employees today have facilities to relax, take breaks and find privacy throughout the day.
For Roche Diagnostics Middle East, another finalist, its people are its biggest asset, committed to doing their very best work with integrity, courage, and passion.
“Only through highly engaged teams, who are deeply connected to our purpose of ‘doing now what patients need next’, can we make an impact, think and act boldly and be a part of a global community. Providing a rewarding and enriching experience means focusing on the things that matter most: maintaining the well-being of our people so they, in turn, can provide the best innovations for patients, respect for diverse perspectives, recognition that celebrates successes as well as healthy risk-taking, leaders who embrace our values and leadership commitments, development that enables meaningful and successful careers, and a great work environment where people feel valued and respected. Our high engagement and retention rates, collaboration, and innovation are a testament to our success; which ultimately ripples to serve our partners and patients with the highest standards possible,” comments Harald Wolf, General Manager, on Roche Diagnostics Middle East’s unwavering belief in its employees across the region.
Also competing for the Workplace of the Year award, Saudi German Hospital Dubai (SGHD) believes that achieving work-life balance is an ongoing process and that employee satisfaction is among the management’s top priorities. “We strive to maintain an optimal work-life balance among its employees and has been actively promoting the wellbeing of its workforce in the best possible way,” says Dr. Reem Osman, CEO, SGHD, whose wellness programmes include providing a busy calendar of sports and physical activities for its employees and their families who have free access to the hospital’s well-equipped gym and swimming pool, among other facilities.
“We know that happy workers are more resilient; they handle stress more effectively, bounce back from failures and relate better to co-workers. In a healthy culture, employers maintain an open dialogue so they feel a part of something, all of which creates loyalty, high morale and a strong, positive culture, something we work hard to achieve in our organisation,” adds Dr Osman.
Meanwhile, Edris Al Rafi, Chief Executive Officer, Dubai Holding says the company understands that high productivity comes from a healthy body and mind and therefore a workplace that nurtures wellness is of key priority. A natural progression of this culture and vision is manifested in the physical structure of its new Dubai Holding Headquarters built in line with International Well Building Standards.
“Our main objective in designing this first-of-its-kind building in the region was to provide our employees not just a space for wellness events, but an infrastructure that creates more movement and connected spaces for physical wellbeing, facilitate more interaction for social wellbeing as well as more relaxation spaces for emotional wellbeing. Our open and outdoor spaces as well as solar panels are aimed at fostering environmental wellbeing, while having more collaboration spaces could pave the way for more intellectual wellbeing and finally having more healthy food options in our new building could hopefully lead to more choices for nutrition wellbeing,” Al Rafi says.
Schneider Electric and Roche Diagnostics Middle East are also being considered for the Daman Award for Biggest Impact, along with Mashreq.
Several other awards are being given across a diverse range of categories in this year’s edition of the Daman Corporate Health Awards.
RAK Hospital, Dubai Airports, Leader Healthcare and Omnicom Media Group MENA have been shortlisted for the CSR Employee Engagement of the Year award; while Study World Higher Education Services, Mashreq, AECOM, Schneider Electric, Dulsco, Dubai Airports, The First Group, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi and Expo 2020 are competing for the Daman Award for Corporate Health and Wellness Organisation award.
The finalists for the Daman Award for Corporate Health and Wellness Initiative award include Informa, Dulsco, Zulekha Hospitals, National Bank of Fujairah and Gulftainer, which is also competing for the Health & Safety Initiative of the Year award along with HLG Contracting, Dubai Islamic Bank and Khidmah.
“Having a wellness initiative is one thing, however securing the support of the organisation to participate is another. For a programme to be successful, individuals and teams need to manage the programme with passion and commitment to cascade its objectives, benefits and mechanics across the organisation,” comments Becky Crayman, Programme Director, MEED.
To recognise the efforts of individual influencers and leaders as well as teams involved in managing corporate wellness programmes, Daman Corporate Health Awards is giving away the Corporate Wellness Leader of the Year award and this year’s finalists are Patricio Rivera (Al Hosn Gas), His Excellency Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair (Mashreq) and Glenn Saldanha (Dubai Airports).
The Corporate Wellness Professional of the Year award shortlist includes Clare Patterson (Haddins) and Dr Ayesha Mussabah Al Memari (Mafraq Hospital); while the Corporate Wellness Team of the Year award is being contested by Dubai Airport Freezone, Mashreq, Dubai Airports and Mafraq Hospital.
Meanwhile, Advantage Sports Services, Beyond Nutrition Health and Wellness Service, DUPLAYS, Eternity, Haddins Fitness, Arabian Wellness, Ignite Fitness and Wellness and Flabuless have been shortlisted for the Corporate Wellness Partner of the Year award.
Organisations who have shown creativity and achieved high impact results in communicating their wellness initiatives will also be recognised through the Communications Campaign of the Year category with Dubai Holding and Mashreq as finalists.
A total of 48 companies, individuals and teams will now move on to the final round of judging to determine this year’s winners of the Daman Corporate Health Awards. The winners will be recognised on 25 October 2017 at the Westin Mina Seyahi, Dubai. – firstname.lastname@example.org