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The increasing cost of health care is a topic that concerns everyone. And, with rising healthcare costs and workplace accidents costing companies significant amounts of money, it’s no wonder that improving worker health and safety is on many business owners’ minds. In fact, in a recent survey performed by Wasp Barcode, 44% of business owners said that employee healthcare is one of their top challenges, just behind hiring and profits. For businesses with more than 50 employees, the survey revealed healthcare concerns even surpass the challenge of increasing the profit margin.
Given the impact of health and safety costs on a business, it’s no surprise that businesses are doing all they can to reduce those costs. While shopping for the best medical insurance policies and implementing employee fitness programs are popular ways to mitigate health-related expenses, one less-obvious solution can also have a significant impact: energy efficiency improvements.
In addition to lowering energy costs, implementing certain energy efficiency projects in the workplace can help make it a healthier and safer place. Some benefits include:
A reduction in workplace accidents: A study by the British Industrial Fatigue Board demonstrates that the higher the temperature gets beyond 68oF in the workplace, the greater the risk of accidents due to increased drowsiness. By improving the efficiency of HVAC systems, businesses exercise greater control over temperature swings, resulting in more alert employees and reduced energy costs.
Better lighting reduces headaches: Older halogen and incandescent bulbs emit a harsh light, which can lead to headaches and a reduction in employee productivity. By switching to efficient and milder LED lighting, a business can reduce employee headaches by 27%, according to the US Green Building Council.
A reduction in the symptoms of allergies and asthma – Air quality greatly affects respiratory function, and older systems may not have the proper filters to keep the air clean. By upgrading HVAC systems, businesses can improve indoor air quality by removing the majority of allergens, toxins, and microbes from the air. This not only improves employees’ quality of life and increases productivity, but, according to the US Green Building Council, it reduces allergy and asthma symptoms up to 25%, which also reduces healthcare costs.
Fewer employee sick days – Companies in LEED or ENERGY STAR certified buildings report an average of 2.88 fewer sick days per employee. That saves businesses over $1200 in lost productivity per employee, which adds up fast — especially as a business grows.
Perhaps surprisingly, these same improvements help reduce costs related to healthcare and safety by improving the overall work environment. Contact National Grid today at ngrid.com/save to learn more about how to make energy saving improvements that lower overhead costs as well as improve employee health and safety.
About National Grid
National Grid is one of the largest investor-owned energy companies in the world and has helped businesses across New York, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts achieve the many benefits of saving energy.
National Grid is a proud sponsor of Mass Save.