The term ‘holistic approach’ is gaining currency in human resource management – but what does it actually mean? Firstly, holistic is the idea that the whole is more than merely the sum of parts, and workplace is any or all places where people are employed.

A holistic approach to work therefore implies that a business should approach employee relations in a considered and overarching way to ensure staff are well supported and can work productively.

Today many companies are introducing workplace programmes to ensure employees are well taken care of. Think of Google – this company has been on Forbes’ Best Places to Work list for the past 10 years. It takes a holistic approach to caring for its employees, considering both physical and mental health needs. Google offers staff virtual doctor visits, three prepared organic meals a day, free personal fitness classes, on-site oil changes and haircuts, nap pods and free on-site laundry rooms. Ok, so we can’t all be Google. But Google’s approach shows that employees respond to being looked after.

In today’s talent market, pursuing new opportunities is top of mind for professionals with an increasing number of people actively planning to make a move within a year if not within the next six months. A positive work environment is one of the greatest strengths a business can have so don’t be afraid to go the extra mile in order to keep hold of your best talent.

Give meaning to work

Companies that provide autonomy, creative opportunities, competitive salaries and a caring, connected environment will generally outperform those that take a more streamlined approach. Reports have proven that high performers can deliver up to 400 percent more productivity – but if they’re undervalued or overlooked, they will seek challenges and rewards elsewhere. The key to developing a holistic environment is to regularly ask your employees what’s important to them and empower them to live a balanced lifestyle and make positive changes in your business.


Leadership is ranked in Deloitte’s top five elements for what makes an “irresistible organisation”. This sits alongside meaningful work, hands-on management, a positive work environment and growth opportunity. While staff engagement is driven by all these things, an employee’s relationship with their direct manager, belief in the senior leadership team and pride in the company they work for top the list. This is why transparency, honesty and continuous investment in people are key corporate leadership attributes.

Final thoughts

Developing a workforce of creative contributors is no longer defined to a human resources programme – it should be viewed as a core business strategy. As a leading human resource and recruitment company, Decipher Group supports business leaders to develop, initiate and maintain the platforms, processes and systems that support successful employee engagement and retention strategies.

Need help?

If you want to find out more about how you can create a holistic working environment, don’t hesitate to contact us.

The Decipher Team

To stay on top of current recruitment trends and technologies follow Decipher Group on LinkedIn.

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