It’s not a secret that health can affect work, and that work can also affect health. Because of this, many organizations, to further engage their employees and improve their overall experience, are investing in wellness programs. Starting out as perks, wellness programs today are more popular than ever and are also regularly part of a company’s benefits package. But while it’s popular, there has also been controversies on whether they really bring something of value. So before you invest, it’s good to answer first the question: should you have wellness programs for your organization?
4 Benefits of Wellness Programs
To truly know whether you should invest in wellness programs, here are 4 benefits of them!
Wellness Programs Increase Healthy Behaviors
In 2013’s Rand Health Quarterly, they found out that lifestyle management interventions, as part of workplace wellness programs can reduce risk factors, such as smoking, and increase healthy behaviors, such as exercise. With a lot of diseases (especially chronic ones) as results of the accumulation of unhealthy behaviors and lifestyle, having wellness programs for your employees to help them shift to a healthier condition is a good part of your overall experience.
Wellness Programs Reduce Costs
When effective, studies show that wellness programs do reduce healthcare costs. With the core of these programs being focused on the increase of healthy behaviors, organizations who are successful in their implementation will see a decrease in their costs–that is, savings from program participation will be greater than the actual cost of the program.
Wellness Programs Help Recruitment and Retention
There are a lot of factors that affect a talent’s decision to accept a job offer. But, it does help if you offer a competitive compensation package and good benefits. And these days, more and more employees are concerned about their health. They want to have better physical and emotional well-being and also desire to have the company’s support in these aspects. Offering wellness programs can help you set yourself apart from your competitors in a candidate’s eyes.
On the other hand, wellness programs also impact an employee’s loyalty and retention. Investing in your employee’s well-being sends the message that you care for them beyond what they do for your company. They feel valued and appreciated as an important member of your organization. Your employees can find another job somewhere, but can their new company treat and value them the same way?
They Improve Productivity
Employers frequently focus on reducing absenteeism. In fact, it’s common among company policies to address this problem, giving sanctions should an employee go AWOL (absence without leave). However, there’s another factor that is also detrimental to the company–presenteeism. The best scenario to describe presenteeism is when an employee is physically at work but not working, resulting in poor productivity.
In fact, a report by Global Corporate Challenge found that while employees were absent from work an average of four days per year, they also confessed to being unproductive on the job for 57.5 days each. This is a huge cost for a company. And one of the main causes of presenteeism is poor health. When your wellness programs reduce presenteeism, they also help improve productivity.
The benefits promised by wellness programs are enticing. But before you invest, you have to keep in mind that you will only experience the benefits of wellness programs if they fit your organization and your employee needs and if they are implemented successfully. Rushing to have wellness programs for your team without proper planning will only result in bleeding your organization money.