Picture two employees: one comes to work, refreshed, energetic and ready to give the day ahead his best; another comes in on time but drags his feet through work, is sluggish through meetings, and can’t wait till it’s time to leave. Which employee is more productive and engaged? The answer is simple. All organisations want active, motivated employees that contribute to improved operations.
The concept of corporate wellness culture has evolved greatly in recent years to include more than just the traditional strategies like changing a cafeteria menu or having short-term weight loss challenges. The truth is that good health cannot exist in a vacuum. It has to be entrenched in the workplace culture and a part of every individual’s agenda. We briefly highlight the many benefits of how it will set you up to gain early and consistent support to long term success.
1. You get increased productivity
As the lines between work and life get increasingly blurred, providing a comprehensive wellness program that shows employees their organisation cares for their wellbeing can become an effective strategy to drive productivity and engagement. What’s more, an employee wellness program can save the company money in lost productivity. According to a study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, when employees leveraged wellness programs to make lifestyle changes, they ended up saving their companies about $353 in recouped productivity—productivity they gained as a result of their newfound wellness.
2. You have a new way to give rewards and recognition
As our managerial positions become more broadly defined due to multiple business changes, adaptability becomes a highly prized asset. Those who adapt well to change are seen as those who need to be retained in the workplace, as they quickly assess a new situation and find ways to roll up their sleeves and get the job done. Top research at Gallup discovered that employees who are engaged at work and also experience high levels of well-being were 45% more likely than other employees to adapt to change. Implementing the right employee wellness program can not only help employees be more engaged, less stressed and more adaptable in the face of business challenges.
3. You get more engaged employees
The average working professional spends close to 40 hours a week at work. This naturally dictates how a person would choose to spend the hours away from work and more specifically, how much they prioritize exercise, sleep and health. As Gallup researcher Jim Harter puts it, “The whole person comes to work, not just the worker,” and there is concrete evidence to back this statement. Research conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit suggests that well defined employee wellness programs, “increase employee engagement with the company’s mission and goals. Companies that build a wellness culture thus acquire a workforce that is not only more focused and engaged, but that sees that culture as benefiting their careers.”
4. You attract fresh talent
As the talent landscape becomes more competitive, corporate wellness programs are emerging as a strategy to differentiate their organisation and communicate an attractive workplace culture. And this strategy doesn’t seem to be going unnoticed. A 2018 Deloitte Human Capital Trends report has found that two-thirds of organizations now state that well-being programs are a critical part of their employment brand and culture. Having happy employees who are proud of their workplace culture means your employer ratings go up, which brings new attention to the company, and what’s more, you get to dip into a fresh talent pool!
5. You embrace digital
Monitoring health and productivity data offline can be tiring and cumbersome even for the most diligent of HR professionals. It’s also 2018! It’s time to take it all digital, isn’t it? An international medical study conducted in 2015 by healthcare group, Bupa, found that three in five employees would be more proactive with managing their personal health and wellbeing if their employer supported them with a digital platform. Companies today have more access to health-related data than ever before, and technology is making it easier to analyse and design programs that best support their health and wellbeing. In fact, a recent Mercer paper reports that, “by analysing and correlating demographic, health and employee-provided data from sources as varied as candidate-screening assessments, absence-management systems, performance reviews, social media and even wearables, you can identify which benefit programs your employees truly value.”
As the HR representative, you’re probably already on the path to finding new ways to find programs that are worthy of your company’s attention and investment. Take the time to align your approach to employee wellness, and it will impact all aspects of your organisations health.