During 2018, the HR team here at SparkPost made wellness in the workplace a priority! Even though we had a limited budget we were able to create a wellness program that we were proud of and got employees moving! We’re of the mindset that you can still be productive at work (maybe a little more so) while adding some fun and educational wellness initiatives to the mix.
Safety in the Office
One very important aspect of any wellness initiative is safety in the office. We added new first aid kits and AED machines to both our San Francisco, CA and Columbia, MD offices. Additionally, our Maryland employees and some of our remote employees had the opportunity to go through CPR & AED training offered by Howard County, MD this past summer.
Another activity that we hosted at our Columbia, MD office was a Krav Maga self-defense class. We felt this was a great educational and exercise opportunity for our employees. We had over 20 employees join in this rigorous program! Mike Erdely, Director of Infrastructure, was super excited for this class. He mentioned “After taking about a year off from Krav Maga, it was nice to have Jeremy [one of my favorite instructors] come to our office and remind me about what I’d been missing. It was great to see some of my SparkPost teammates learning about something that has been so important to me over the last 5 years. I would love to see more Krav Maga sessions in the future.”
Fresh and Local Produce
To improve our health, we offered Community-supported Agriculture (CSA) from Wheeler Farm this past summer. We figured this was an easy and convenient way for our employees to add fresh produce to their diets! With delivery directly to the office, it was definitely a win for employees. Angie Parise, HR Specialist, raved about the program, saying “[My] family really enjoyed the CSA! It was great to have a farm fresh delivery every week. We loved their homemade Old Bay pickles!” Many other employees shared Angie’s sentiment, so in 2019 we plan to purchase an office plan so that employees can continue to have access to fresh and local produce.
This summer we began offering afternoon stretching sessions twice a week in our Columbia, MD office. These quick 15 minute breaks in the afternoon were a hit with the SparkPost team! We figured everyone needs a brain break, and what better way to do that than with some physical activity! Isaac Kim, Technical Product Manager (and Certified Trainer!) led most of our sessions over the last several months. He focused on exercises and stretches that were best for those who sit for most of the day.
October Fitness Challenge
To get the whole company up and moving we ran a two-week fitness challenge in October. The goal was to help employees make wellness a priority by encouraging them to be more active throughout the day, drink more water, and eat healthier. Additionally, we also gave them access to flu shots in the office! We ran the challenge across the company – so whether you were in the UK, San Francisco, Maryland or at home working remotely, you could join in the fun. We had 53 employees participate. Many of our Maryland employees took walks around our office block and opted for healthier snacks from our fully-stocked kitchen. Managers got creative and made their 1:1s more active by walking! Brent Sleeper, Senior Product Marketing Manager and one of the fitness challenge’s winners said, “I thought the social part of our wellness challenge was fun, and motivating as well. In part, I was able to see all the things I was already doing to be active and healthy, but it also helped me set some goals to be consistent about sticking to healthy habits and activity.” Additionally, he said, “It was neat to see the range of activities the SparkPost team participate in to be active outside of work. It definitely gave me some insight and connection to my colleagues that was different than the usual Slacks and emails.” Winners of the challenge won awesome health-related prizes including a Fitbit and a Hydrate Spark 2.0 Smart Water Bottle!
Employees were able to get their flu shots in the office again this year. We were happy about this year’s participation with over 50 employees getting their shots in our offices! We also encouraged clean workstations in the office. We nicknamed it ‘Wipe Down Wednesdays”. We’ll round out the year with massages in the Columbia, MD office and our San Francisco team will kick-off another year of wellness by attending a SoulCycle class in January 2019!
— Jayne (@JayneTanton) October 10, 2018
As you can see, we packed a lot in this year. We decided to try different things and this month we surveyed our employees to see what they liked and what we can we add and change in 2019! We are looking forward to a fun, active 2019!