Specsavers Corporate Eyecare study reveals "too many companies ignoring work-related eyecare"
The research took place among 223 heads of organisations, in both public and private sectors. It reveals that nearly two-thirds (64%) of businesses do not have a policy to test the eyesight of their employees who drive in the course of their work. Just 18% of respondents said they offer eye tests to some of their drivers and an enlightened but worryingly small 18% (less than one-fifth) offer eye tests to all drivers.
Some of the reluctance to provide this basic care may be linked to concerns surrounding the perceived costs. Of those respondents who do provide eyecare for employees (mostly to office-based staff under Display Screen regulations), 42% still use the often higher-priced system of reimbursing employees through expenses.
Although a shrewd one-third (33%) of employers do purchase eyecare vouchers, they are not necessarily enjoying the full advantages. Some 60% are not aware of any of the additional benefits available with eyecare vouchers. Only 29% are aware of discount vouchers for money off glasses for employees and just 5% are aware of discounts for employees’ families. A tiny 4% are aware of two-for-one offers and no-one was aware of free upgrades, such as designer frames or reactions lenses.
Almost half (47%) of respondents believe these additional benefits have a monetary value of less than £30 and 81% believe it is less than £60. In fact, the worth of additional free goods and services may be up to £82 per employee from some corporate eyecare suppliers.
Jim Lythgow, director of strategic alliances at Specsavers Corporate Eyecare, said: ‘Our research shows that a greater knowledge of corporate eyecare could allow employees to find more affordable options, which may enable them to offer eyecare to all drivers. Alongside this, employers would be able to offer their staff increased and tangible benefits.’