Look around the UK’s towns and cities now and you’ll see more cyclists than ever before. The legacy of the London Olympic Games, the success achieved by Britain’s Elite cyclists, as well as a desire to be healthier and reduce carbon emissions has led to an upsurge in people leaving the car at home and cycling to work.
If you’re an employer, a cycle to work scheme could be a great addition to any workplace wellbeing strategy. After all, who doesn’t want healthier, happier, and more productive employees who take less days off sick?
And aside from that, being able to say that your business is interested in protecting the environment is a badge of honour that will impress clients and attract the best employees.
So how you can you persuade your employees to leave the comfort of their car and cycle to work? Here are a few strategies you can use;
Make sure you have adequate facilities
So you can’t control the Great British weather or the amount of traffic that employees will have to negotiate, but you can provide them with some comfort when they arrive at work. Provide somewhere safe and secure to lock their bikes. Ideally it should be undercover and in a well-lit area. The most obvious thing to provide is shower and changing facilities. Nobody wants to spend all day feeling sweaty at their desk. You’ll also need to provide storage space for bags and cycling gear.
Join a cycle to work scheme
Did you know that the government allows employers to loan bikes and safety equipment to employees as a tax-free benefit? The scheme has been in operation since 1999, to encourage people to ditch their cars to reduce pollution. Joining a cycle to work scheme will prove to be an excellent benefit to offer your employees, as well as benefitting the environment, of course.
Promote cycling to work
So you set up a scheme, but it will only grow into something worthwhile if you promote it in the right way. Join forces with a local cycling club, do a discount deal with a cycling shop, and organise some resources you can give to employees who want to start cycling to work (think safety, equipment they’ll need etc.)
Lead by example
Managers should lead by example. If you’re encouraging employees to cycle to work, but you won’t dare give up your BMW, don’t expect too much enthusiasm. Instead, brave the weather, strap on your helmet, put on your cycling gloves like you mean business, and start doing your bit for the planet!