In my experience of doing corporate on-site massage, it became clear that there was a fair bit to organise when inviting therapists to come on-site to visit staff. This takes up valuable time, resources, and office space. My idea was to create a solution to this problem by creating a mobile therapy space that can be driven on-site, thus making the whole process simpler and more cost-effective. Research suggests that due to stress and poor lifestyle choices, absenteeism costs employers upwards of £550 per person per year, on-site therapy can help to address this problem.
The idea of providing corporate on-site massage in a mobile therapy van derived from being contacted by Radio Derby. I attended their offices one cold early spring morning in March 2019 so that they could interview me and see the finished bus. Throughout the morning, staff were sent out to the wood burner heated bus to sample a treatment. Their comments were recorded live on air. The feedback for the bus received was really positive, with staff commenting on how beneficial it felt to enter a serene, warm environment for twenty minutes or so to get away from their desks, have their aches and pains relieved with a tailored to their needs treatment and re-charge their batteries, before getting back to the office refreshed, with comfortable bodies and ready to work, proving that this concept could work in this environment. The Shiatsu Bus now has regular corporate clients and I strongly believe that staff really value and appreciate having a service like this provided for them by their employer. It boosts staff morale and has a generally positive effect within the workplace.
A UNIQUE SOLUTION TO EMPLOYEE WELLBEING AT WORK:
"Staff absence is important to business – it is disruptive to operations requiring management resources to organise cover and can impact upon the need to pay staff overtime. Sickness absence costs UK businesses an estimated £29bn1 each year, with the average worker taking 6.6 days off each year due to sickness."
CIPD - Absence Management: Annual Survey Report 2015
The space inside the Shiatsu Bus is temperature-controlled and features a woodburning stove and privacy glass which makes for a cosy and welcoming environment. Solar panels on the roof power all the electricity onboard and the awning on the side of the van turns into a tent to create a dedicated space for multiple therapists to treat at once. This feature lends itself well to a variety of events including corporate wellness days.