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CASE STUDY – Norris Construction Group

Are you looking for ways to make your workplace more active?

Check out our most recent case study of a Geelong-based business who is having a positive impact on the lives of their employees by advocating the importance of physical activity.

CASE STUDY – Norris Construction Group

Industry: Construction

Employees: 220

Location: South Geelong

This company developed a relationship with a Geelong fitness group to provide their employees with free use of an on-site gymnasium by transforming an empty facility at their head office.

It’s not surprising what research tells us about people’s gym habits.

When it comes to the question of why many of us don’t go to the gym as often as we’d like to (if at all), one consistent theme emerges.

“I just don’t have the time”.

That is a popular response evident in many surveys conducted on the subject – and we can all relate to it.

For many people, finding the time in the morning to pack a bag, travel to the gym, work out, have a shower, get ready for work and then head into the office can be challenging.

At the other end of the day, finding the time to go through the same process after work provides a new set of obstacles.

 But what would happen if the gym came to your workplace?

One Geelong business decided to find out.

Norris Construction Group – a civil construction company with expertise in large-scale commercial projects – has an on-site gymnasium on its premises in Gravel Pitts Road, South Geelong.

The facility was originally a large empty shed, however the company transformed the space into a fitness centre by partnering with O’Malley Fitness, a well-known Geelong fitness group who now occupy the site and provide all the equipment.

As part of this unique relationship, employees of Norris Construction Group are able to access this on-site gym for free – a membership that includes the use of all equipment, free personal training sessions and free group fitness classes.

Eve Coates, an employee at Norris Construction Group, said the on-site gymnasium was part of a wellbeing program aimed at improving the physical and mental health of its 220 employees.

“Our industry can be demanding and we work long, hard hours – so the importance of offering a place where employees can go to boost their health and fitness is really important to us as an organisation,” Eve said.

This is the kind of progressive thinking many businesses are starting to develop as they begin to recognise and prioritise the importance of their employees leading more active lifestyles – and the role the employer can play in encouraging the employee.

It demonstrates a shared goal, and the benefits are mutual.

“We have seen great team building, productivity and a general wellbeing of people, especially during the more stressful times when everyone needs an outlet,” Eve said.

The company has also found that the innovative wellbeing program has become a selling point to potential employees.

“We feel like we have increased our employee engagement and satisfaction – and the gym has been a great offering to new talent when recruiting,” Eve said.

The uptake has justified the company’s decision to invest in their people, with feedback showing a genuine gratitude among employees.

“We have teams heading over to the gym at lunch for group PT’s or partner workouts, which is fantastic for team building and stress relief in the middle of the day,’ Eve reveals.

“A lot of our guys use it first-up in the morning before starting their day in the office or on-site. They really do feel lucky to have a facility like this at their head office.”

Some employees were quicker than others to see how they could use the facility to make a positive behaviour change.

“Encouraging people who have never used a gym before has been a small barrier,” Eve acknowledges.

“So we have offered these people a specially-tailored 1-on-1 session with a personal trainer – just to help them get familiar and learn the basics.

“We find it can take away any intimidation factor that might be there.”

The company has even begun running friendly competitions among employees to increase motivation, such as a 30-day fitness challenge completed last September.

“Each employee had to engage in a minimum 60 minutes of exercise a day for 30 days and log it via an app to prove they had completed their hour each day,” Eve said.

“It was great for everyone’s fitness and also for group morale. It was great to see a bit of banter between everyone who participated.”

Do you know of an active workplace in Geelong? If so, we would love to hear from you – contact us at movers@activegeelong.org.au so we can spotlight more organisations who are joining our city’s growing movement movement.