Employee wellness programs come in various shapes and sizes, but at the most basic level, they’re intended to improve and promote employee mental and physical well-being.
Here are best practices to establish and design a workplace wellness program:
Ask Your Employees First
Do an internal survey to determine what kind of things your employees want and would value. You can ask questions like:
“What are your health goals?”
“Do you think conducting wellness programs during office hours is helpful?”
“Do you feel that we could do more to support you with your physical and mental health? If so, how?”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides guidance on designing an employee survey, including survey topic areas.
A wellness program will not work without support from the management. It takes time, money, and resources to build and launch a successful employee wellness program. And leadership buy-in is critical for funding purposes, for guidance, for getting support throughout the organization, and for approving program policies and processes.
Appoint Wellness Champions
The next step is, creating an internal well-being champions’ team to lead your program and build a wellness culture in the organization.
Make sure that management sets clear and measurable objectives and supports them with a budget. Here are some responsibilities of the wellness champions’ team:
– Evaluating the current workplace programs and policies
– Assessing employee needs and preferences
– Developing a wellness program plan and process (which includes a vision statement, goals, objectives, and activities)
– Monitoring and evaluating the wellness program
Decide the Program Budget
It’s a critical step. Without a sufficient budget, the program will stall. While creating a wellness budget, include the cost of incentives or rewards, activities cost, marketing, and program design cost.
Incentives and Rewards
Employee Incentives or rewards are effective tools to increase participation rates and encourage individuals to complete a program. You can offer reward points that can be exchanged for shopping, gifts, food, or monetary awards.
10 Employee Wellness Program Stats
Here’s an infographic by Springworks on corporate wellness program stats that will prove why employee wellness programs are so important.
1. A workplace that enhances employee health and wellbeing would encourage 7 out of 10 to stay at their current job. (Source)
2. 89% of workers at companies that support well-being efforts are more likely to recommend their company as a good place to work. (Source)
3. Lack of exercise is common, with 29% of employees exercising only 0-1 days per week.
4. 1 out of 6 people experiences some form of mental health problems in the workplace. (Source)
5. Research has demonstrated that workplace health initiatives can help reduce sick leave absenteeism by 27% and healthcare costs for companies by 26%. (Source)
6. 61% of employees agree that they’ve made healthier lifestyle choices because of their company’s wellness program. (Source)
7. 38% of wellness program participants said it helped them take fewer sick days. (Source)
8. 91% of workers at companies that support well-being efforts say they feel motivated to do their best. (Source)
9. 74% of employers view well-being as important to employees and a useful tool for recruiting and retaining staff. (Source)
10. 54% of employees say their employers should offer financial rewards for living healthy lifestyles. (Source)