CT Staffing and Recruiting News

The latest advice and best practices in hiring and careers.

A Look at SHRM’s Smoking in the Workplace Survey

Filter of cigaretteJust off the presses and smoking hot (pun intended) – here’s some of the data that was collected from the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) Smoking in the Workplace survey, which was conducted in December 2015. Randomly selected SHRM members were the survey participants and the findings were published a few weeks ago.

The biggest trend when it comes to the topic of workplace smoking should come as no surprise – employers are establishing initiatives that push the benefits of a living a smoke-free life. Karen Wessels, SHRM’s project lead for the survey, contributes this to the ongoing rise of healthcare costs and a growing interest from employers to develop a company-wide wellness strategy and programs that help their employees live healthier lives.

Here are more survey highlights:

  • 85% of those surveyed said their organization has a formal, written smoke policy.
  • 47% of survey respondents work for organizations that restrict smoking at work. Of those, more than half limit smoking to common indoor or outdoor areas. And 31% ban smoking in the workplace, both inside and outside.
  • Of those organizations with a formal smoke policy, more than 50% said that their HR department takes disciplinary action against employees who violate their smoking policy. For most violators, they receive a verbal or written warning.
  • 18% of respondents say their organization has instituted smoking surcharges like higher healthcare premiums for smokers. For those organizations with surcharges, 45% said employee workplace smoking decreased once the surcharge policy was implemented.
  • 54% of survey respondents said their organization has wellness initiatives in place that provide information about the benefits of smoke-free living. And close to half of those organizations reported a drop in employee smoking after the wellness information was shared.
  • 44% said that their smoking policy does mention vaping (the use of e-cigarettes). And one-third of organizations that do not have a vaping policy plan to establish one within the year.

Organizations are being helped along by government initiatives such as the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which states employers can give big incentives to non-smoking employees, such as discounts off their healthcare premium. There are even bigger incentives for employees who participate in a tobacco-cessation program.

Click here to read the full SHRM article about this survey.

What do you think the next big trend will be when it comes to workplace smoking? Share your thoughts with us.