A unique offering can look after not only employees’ eyes, but also their general health, says Ben Fletcher, managing director of Boots Opticians
Boots believes that having a corporate eyecare proposition in place is hugely important: one of the things we’re very passionate about is making sure that we are able to care for the eye health of every person in the country. We want to be health-led in the approach that we bring to companies.
In fact there are two health aspects behind the importance of eye care. Firstly, the obvious element that many people understand, at least in part – the health of the eye itself. The Boots Opticians eye health check includes a digital photograph of the eye, which allows us to build a history of the eye and eye health, and makes it much easier to spot trends and make a diagnosis.
The second aspect is that it provides a gateway into broader health issues: for every customer that comes to us we start off with a lifestyle questionnaire, because your lifestyle has a huge impact both on your eyes and your general health. For example, having an eye health check is the only way you can understand the body’s cardiovascular system without having invasive surgery, and it is also the best way to diagnose diabetes.
Eye health checks are therefore part of a much bigger health consideration for employees, and help them stay healthy at work as well.
There’s a huge range of health and lifestyle benefits which come out of eyecare.
THE EMPLOYER BENEFIT
Employers gain value from offering eyecare corporately, too. A workplace optical plan signals to the employee commitment to their wellbeing, which is an important trend in the workplace now. They get that ability to signal to their employees that there is that concern not only for their eyecare but also for their general health.
Optical plans also cover duty of care from the working environment point of view, whether for VDU users, drivers, or those needing protective eyeware – in all scenarios the employee is well cared for and looked after. They’re healthier, and in a safer working environment – and in understanding and supporting that, it helps employers improve retention and reduce sickness absence.
A UNIQUE OFFERING
So what makes the Boots Opticians eyecare offering unique? There are four clear aspects. The first is the digital retinal photography service that happens as part of the eye health check – as standard.
The second element is the quality of the lens that we also include as standard. We offer a lens that is reflection free, scratch-resistant, and protects from UV on both the front and back of the lens as part of the Boots range available within the corporate eye care plan.
The third aspect is that we’re part of a bigger healthcare system – Boots Pharmacy, Boots Hearingcare, Boots Consumer Healthcare and Boots Opticians. All the elements work closely together so if an employee comes to see us, our assessments give us a better understanding of their healthcare needs and we can also cross-refer within our healthcare system: there is a continuous healthcare offering in place.
The final element is that we have a market-leading contact lens offer. If employees have a passion for sport, for example, they can use contact lens offer as part of their corporate interaction with us. The Boots Contact Lens Reward Scheme also gives you 50% off all future glasses purchases, as well as 10% off all Boots-branded products across the whole business. It’s a big benefit, and it’s those things really differentiate our offer in the marketplace.
We have just launched a new partnership with ASE Corporate Eyecare, to offer a complete end to end digital process for our EyecarePlan. Vouchers can be purchased online and are distributed electronically so that an employee can simply book an eye health check appointment at the Boots Opticians practice of their choice taking the voucher code on their tablet or mobile phone.
For further information visit www.eyecareplans.co.uk