Support employee work-life balance

Seven tips to improve work-life balance for employees


A healthy work-life balance can lead to happier staff who are more energised and focused on doing their best work. A healthy work-life balance helps to increase productivity and staff retention, especially when your workers feel their employer also values their life outside of work.

Tips to encourage a healthy work-life balance for your staff

Here are seven practical steps employers can take to develop a workplace that encourages a healthy work-life balance for all their employees.

1. Develop an inclusive workplace

By developing a workplace culture that respects differences and values people, you'll have staff who bring their whole selves to work. This approach gives employees an environment where they feel comfortable to talk about life outside work. It will help employers understand what is important to their staff outside of work so they can support them with family commitments, hobbies, and other interests. See diversity, equality, and inclusion in the workplace.

2. Set realistic goals

Ensure staff know their targets and support them to achieve these. Set goals using the SMART system that makes targets specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-based. Review employee performance regularly, including discussions to address potential problems, if they exist, so they can dealt with early. See agreeing performance objectives with staff.

3. Have regular conversations with employees

Encourage your employees to regularly meet with their line manager to discuss their progress, workloads, and challenges. These meetings can help to manage people and resources more effectively. It will also highlight potential issues such as burnout or conflict before challenges escalate. You could also provide staff with guidance or training on effective time management and prioritising tasks to help boost efficiency. See engaging with staff.

4. Explore flexible working options

Consider the benefits of flexible working if it helps your staff manage their work and home life commitments more effectively. Consider the various types of flexible working, such as remote or hybrid working, flexi-time, job sharing, and part-time working, to determine what benefits your business and your staff.

5. Holidays

You should ensure staff take their allocation of annual leave. Instruct staff to switch off from work when on leave by ensuring they don’t bring work phones or laptops on holiday. Employers can set a good example to their staff by taking their total allocation of holidays each year and assigning someone to manage things when they are on leave. See know how much holiday to give your staff.

6. Encourage regular breaks

Encourage staff to take regular breaks. Working for long periods on a single task can be tiring. Support employees in incorporating exercise into their breaks, especially if their job requires them to sit for long periods. Activity can help boost staff energy levels and increase productivity. See hours, rest breaks and the working week

7. Make work enjoyable

We all spend many hours each day working. So, with so much time invested in our job, employers should try to make it as enjoyable as possible for everyone. Encourage staff engagement and feedback to generate ideas on how you could make work and the workplace more fun. Identify opportunities for individuals and different teams to connect through work projects. You could also consider regular staff social events, external health and wellbeing talks, or charity fundraisers. See staff feedback, ideas, and forums.

For further details, see create a healthy work-life balance.