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The Importance of Wellness in the Workplace

Wednesday, March  28,  2018

Workplace Wellness is an investment which works much like any other investment- You put in time and money in hopes of a more valuable outcome, which in this case is the health of your employees, their families and your bottom line. Engagement, motivation, strategy, and support are the keys to a successful workplace wellness program. At Innovative, we have you covered.

One of the most important reasons to begin thinking about wellness for your employees is prevention. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), chronic disease accounts for 75% of total healthcare costs. These chronic conditions, such as stroke, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes, are among the most preventable types of illnesses. The best way to prevent disease is with knowledge and action by both the employer and the employee. With an employer-sponsored wellness program, you can provide targeted health education and resources needed by your employees and put health on the forefront of their priority list.

You may be thinking, what is this going to do for the bottom line– after all, we are a business. Not only can you assist your employees by educating and incentivizing them to live healthier, doing so can benefit your business in a multitude of ways. Employees who are healthier have less sick days (decreased absenteeism) and are more productive than their ‘less healthy’ counterparts. Wellness programs also help to build team comradery and a “culture of wellness,” which in turn, leads to happier, healthier, more productive employees. Employer-sponsored wellness programs foster employee engagement with their colleagues through team activities and challenges and strengthens company loyalty. At the end of the day employees want to be valued and offering a workplace wellness program is a great way for an employer to fulfill that need.

Creating a dynamic wellness program for your employee population that speaks to their needs and incentivizes positive behavior and outcomes is the best strategy to ensure long-term success. Are your employees looking for weight loss tips? Do they want suggestions about eating healthy while at work? Would they be interested in attending a wellness seminar? You may look to start with a wellness survey to ask your employees what they are looking for. You can also consider the needs of your population as a whole. For example, most employees with a sedentary job find it challenging to get enough exercise. Employers can promote physical activity through on-site fitness classes, gym membership discounts/reimbursements, or holding a company-wide walking challenge. Perhaps most of your employees work remotely so an educational webinar would make more sense than an onsite event. Your company wellness program can be as unique as the employees that make up your organization.

When it comes to worksite wellness, the question is not why, but why not? Wellness is increasingly important as the cost of healthcare rises. Instituting a wellness program shows that you are committed to your employees and can help mitigate healthcare costs over time- in other words, a “win-win.” It does not have to be a big undertaking and can start as simply as a Wellness Newsletter and grow over time to include wellness challenges, biometric screenings, Health Coaching or other wellness ‘perks’ for employees. All it takes is an investment from company leadership to make all the difference to your current employees, potential recruits, and even your bottom line.

If you ask us, why wellness, our answer is because we care. Feel free to contact our office to discover new ways to bring wellness into your employee population. Our Wellness Coordinator, Erica Brown, would be happy to discuss the ways that Innovative Workplace Wellness can help you make the right wellness decision for your employees and their families.

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Innovative Benefit Planning L.L.C.