Stopping Smoking

Stopping smoking

You might feel you have little control over your employees smoking but there are many ways you can support them to cut down and become smoke free.

Stopping smoking is one of the best things a person can do to improve their health and, with the help of their local stop smoking service, they’re four times more likely to succeed.


Smoking costs your organisation time and money – through reduced productivity from workers taking smoking breaks and sickness absence due to smoking related illnesses. Smoking long-term can lead to high blood pressure and is linked to heart disease, cancer and strokes. It can also aggravate conditions like asthma or the common cold.

Although smoking rates have fallen over recent years, there are still around 7.4 million adults who smoke in the UK and 71,849 adult smokers (14.3% of the local population) in Gloucestershire.

  • Smoking costs UK businesses around £8.4bn a year in lost productivity
  • Smokers take more sick leave and are at higher risk of premature death
  • Smoking is the biggest cause of preventable deaths in England, accounting for more than 96,000 deaths each year
  • On average, cigarette smokers die 10 years younger than non-smokers and one in two smokers will die from a smoking-related disease.


What you can do to support your employees to stop smoking 


Supporting your employees to give up smoking is an important and positive step towards improving their health and productivity in the workplace.

You can encourage your employees to get FREE stop smoking support through Healthy Lifestyles Gloucestershire, the county’s official stop smoking service.

By allowing your employees time off from work to attend their smoking cessation meetings (usually 1 hour) you will save time in the long run. To make life easier, Healthy Lifestyles Gloucestershire can meet your employees at a place convenient to them. 

75% of people who have received stop smoking support from Healthy Lifestyles Gloucestershire have become smoke-free.

The Healthy Lifestyles Gloucestershire service offers behavioural support tailored to each individual in the form of 12-week one-to-one stop smoking programmes, working with a qualified healthy lifestyles coach. As well as the behavioural support offered – for example goal setting, motivators and tips for managing cravings - the service can also help with nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), a low-risk, licenced medicine which can help manage cravings and is far less harmful than smoking.

Best-You is a free online platform and app that you and your employees can use as your own personal platform to communicate, create goals and track your progress

Create a private Group and invite employees to discuss healthy lifestyles at work – activity, healthy eating or anything else that fits your organisation

Employees can create goals for smoking, healthy eating, alcohol, weight and activity. They can track their progress against their goal each day and Best-You will give motivational feedback

Best-You is full of helpful guidance with a specialised area on mood and stress. Employees can complete self-assessments and discuss this with their employer, if they want to.

You might want to hold a health and wellbeing awareness day and invite in Healthy Lifestyles Gloucestershire to speak to employees about free help to become smoke free. You could also encourage employees who’ve stopped smoking after using the service to become health and wellbeing champions. They could run promotions, campaigns and information sessions in the workplace to encourage and support others to become smoke free.

The Stoptober campaign every October is another opportunity to encourage your employees to give up smoking and signpost them to online support and information. The One You website has lots of helpful information, including case studies about people who’ve successfully quit with help from their local stop smoking service. 

E-cigarettes are at least 95% less harmful than cigarettes, if you have an employee that wants to quit, e-cigarettes could be a good place to start. 

E-cigarettes allow you to inhale nicotine through a vapour rather than smoke. Many people have found that using e-cigarettes has stopped them smoking. 

Watch this video to find out more about e-cigarettes.

Healthy Lifestyles Gloucestershire are an e-cig friendly service who can support your employees to give them one-to-one behavioural support to stop smoking.


Additional Support 

National Resources

There are lots of resources online that can provide information and support on stopping smoking and that you can recommend to your employees.

NHS Live WellStop SmokingNHS Health Checks


ASH (Action on Smoking and Health)

Cancer Research UK – Stop Smoking

British Heart Foundation

Stroke Association


Best-You Heart Age Checker

NHS SmokeFree

Local Support

Healthy Lifestyles Gloucestershire

Gloucestershire’s local FREE stop smoking service

0800 122 3788