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Bike Week: Enable Your Workforce to Embrace the Joy of Cycling

Benefits

Posted on: Tuesday June 04, 2024

by Zach Berwick, New Business Development Director

This year, Cycling UK wants to celebrate cycling as a force for good. We want to celebrate all those who cycle and encourage and enable more cycling, as we know that when more people cycle, we all become happier, healthier, greener and more connected.

Here are some of the ways you can get involved in the workplace…

  • Host a bike breakfast or reward day
    A popular activity for Bike Week is to host a bike breakfast. Reward those who ride to work during Bike Week with a special welcome meal. Or, for those who work remotely gift them an hour to go for a Bike Week ride locally. Add some fun by asking participants to share a selfie on social channels and your internal communications channels using the hashtags #BikeWeek and #BikeHero
     
  • Promote your cycling offers
    Remind staff of any workplace support you have for cycling. Use it as an opportunity to showcase your Cycle Friendly Employer accreditation or Cycle to Work scheme. Why not book a Dr Bike session to check people’s bikes are in working order, invite a local bike shop in or even your Cycle to Work scheme representative to talk about what’s available
     
  • Buddy scheme
    People who haven’t cycled to work before may feel anxious about doing it for the first time. Show them how wonderful cycling to work can be, by creating a buddy scheme during Bike Week. By sharing knowledge on the best routes and making the most of the ride to work, staff are much more likely to make the switch to cycling. Find someone who doesn’t regularly commute by bike and join them on the journey – if you have a group of cyclists, you could start a bike bus to accompany those who are less confident

Benefits of Cycling for Individuals, Businesses, and Society

Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) goals are becoming a key focus for organisations and investors alike. The UK has ambitious net zero targets, and organisations have a big role to play in reducing emissions to ensure these are met. 

Business travel – either for commuting or otherwise – contributes significant emissions and taking strides to reduce this is imperative if we want to decarbonise our economy. Active travel, such as cycling, not only has far-reaching environmental benefits, but financial and health benefits to the individual also, which can in turn result in business benefits too.

Health benefits: Encouraging employees to cycle to work can help improve their physical and mental health. Regular exercise has been shown to reduce stress and improve mood, which can have a positive impact on employee well-being and job satisfaction. There are many physical health advantages to cycling, too. It drastically lowers the chances of developing heart disease, cancer, type 2 diabetes and obesity , and it is estimated that increased walking and cycling could save 1,189 people from early deaths each year.  Helping your employees improve their physical health through cycling also provides business advantages – research has shown that staff who cycle are happier, more productive, take fewer sick days and stay longer in their roles.

Environmental impact: Transport is the UK’s most emitting sector, accounting for c. 24% of all emissions. On top of this, commuting accounts for 98% of an individuals work-related carbon footprint. With up to 3 million commuters travelling under 2km to get to their place of work, active commuting is an incredibly viable option for many. However, currently only 2% of commuters travel to work by bike, whilst 45% opt to travel by car. Getting more people out of a car and onto a bike will help reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality, too. Encouraging employees to cycle to work can help reduce your organisation's carbon footprint and support sustainable transport. This can help position your organisation as a responsible and environmentally conscious employer, enabling you to attract and retain talent.

Economic benefits: As the cost-of-living crisis continues, individuals are constantly looking for ways to save pennies. Implementing a Cycle to Work scheme not only helps you workers cut commuting costs, but also enables them to spread the cost of their purchase via salary sacrifice, while making tax and NI savings too. 

How the Cycle to Work Scheme Can Help

The Cycle to Work scheme is a government-backed initiative in the UK that allows employees to purchase a bike and cycling accessories through salary sacrifice. The Cycle to Work scheme can be a valuable tool for employers looking to support their employees' well-being and promote sustainable transport. By encouraging cycling to work, employers may be able to reduce stress levels among employees and improve their overall health and job satisfaction.

Offering the Cycle to Work scheme can help boost employee engagement and morale, as it shows that the employer is invested in their employees' well-being and willing to support them in achieving their personal goals.

Bike Week presents a wonderful opportunity to support your staff to embrace the joys of cycling while reaping its multitude of benefits - for both them and your organisation. Join the movement, and celebrate Bike Week by pedaling towards a healthier, greener, and happier future with the Cycle to Work scheme. 

If you would like to find out more about the scheme, download our Cycle to Work brochure, or contact us for no-obligation advice from a Personal Group Benefits Expert.
 

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