Everyone wins when an employee decides to commute by bike. Here’s how to encourage your non-cycling staff to get (back) on two wheels.
Cycle commuters enjoy better health and save money. Employers get happier, more productive staff. There’s less air pollution and traffic congestion for us all. Despite these positive points, it’s hard to convince people who haven’t been on a bike since childhood to convert to a cycle commute.
You need to provide support that addresses the reasons that your non-cycling staff have for not wanting to ride a bike to work. Here’s how:
Road safety concerns
This is the big one. Survey data shows that nearly two-thirds (62%) of adults agree with the statement: ‘It is too dangerous for me to cycle on the roads.’
While the perception of danger is worse than the reality, traffic-free routes are key for converting non-cyclists. You could:
- Buy and give out free copies of Sustrans’ red-topped regional maps.
- Put a desktop shortcut to Cyclestreets on all workplace computers.
- Arrange short test rides – in work time – on traffic-free local routes for small groups of employees. You may need hire bikes or pool bikes (see below).
Don’t own a (working) bike
Many non-cyclists don’t own a bike, or if they do it’s unrideable due to disrepair. A functional bike is a critical first step. You could:
- Pay a local Cyclescheme retailer to run a ‘Dr Bike’ session at your workplace so out-of-action bikes can be diagnosed and/or fixed for free.
- Identify and promote local bike repair shops near your workplace that employees can choose to use.
- Invest in a few workplace pool bikes that staff can borrow for free. Folding bikes are a good choice as most are one-size-fits-all.
Believe cycling is harder and slower than driving
Non-cyclists won’t realise how much easier it is to cycle on a quality lightweight bike that fits them properly – never mind an e-bike! They might not know that cyclists are faster than drivers in urban areas. You could:
- Arrange for a local Cyclescheme retailer to bring a few e-bikes for staff to try out in the car park.
- Set up a hybrid on an indoor trainer so that staff can see how long it takes to travel a given distance by bike. All that’s needed is a bike, an indoor trainer, and a cycle computer with a rear-wheel sensor. Alternatively, you could invest in Zwift so that staff can try riding a virtual urban course.
Haven’t considered cycling
The reality is that many non-cyclists won’t have even thought about cycling. So why not just start that conversation? You could:
- Promote your Cyclescheme offering – don’t forget that there is a Cyclescheme package for every employee. There are plenty of promotional assets on the MySchemes platform that can be downloaded and used for free.
- Run a presentation (in work time) on cycle commuting. Include video footage on the benefits of cycling. Perhaps some your existing Cyclescheme participants are happy to talk about their experiences.
- Look into becoming a Cycle Friendly Employer. There are lots of suggestions in the framework that will make cycling to your workplace a more attractive idea.
Ready to add Cyclescheme as an employee benefit?