Any initiative taken by an organization to uplift its employees’ overall health or wellness falls under the category of employee wellness programs. While most of these programs are quite simple and can be implemented pretty easily, others can take months of planning for seamless execution.
Some of the most common practices that companies follow under these programs are:
- Stress-reducing and mental health improving workshops
- Offering nap breaks during work hours
- Scheduling monthly or weekly exercise and yoga classes
- Tracking employees’ health and performance through wearable devices
- Providing health snacks and lunch during breaks
While these programs are definitely beneficial for employees, they also help employers in the long-run by reducing healthcare costs, retaining employees, and creating a healthy and motivated workforce.
Here are 8 advantages that you and your company can also enjoy through employee wellness programs:
1. Decrease healthcare and absenteeism costs:
Leveraging employee wellness programs directly impacts your finances by reducing unwanted health costs. In America alone, employers spend more than $530 billion annually on healthcare costs due to poor workers’ health.
Through weekly exercise schedules and by motivating employees for a healthy lifestyle, you can reduce health expenditures. Furthermore, a healthy workforce will also take fewer leaves which is generally the case when they don’t have access to such wellness workshops. Reduced employee unavailability also leads to efficient on-floor activities that result in higher productivity.
2. Higher engagement and improved relationships:
As per research, employees who eat healthy and include some sort of physical activity in their routine engage more with their colleagues. Moreover, these employees also feel motivated to do their best.
Hence, it has become somewhat mandatory for companies to include fitness sessions in their wellness programs to engage employees and increase collaboration among them. This also helps workers to build, improve, or perfect relationships with each other which reduces instances of harassment and bullying in corporations, leading to a supportive and stress-free environment.
3. Reduced workplace stress:
In America alone, 94% of employees have reported experiencing stress at their workplace. If suppressed, it can lead to various cardiovascular and mental health diseases among employees like high blood pressure, depression, and anxiety.
Unfortunately, work-stress has become a common occurrence that is often neglected in offices. Jam-packed work schedules, tight deadlines, and even job insecurity sometimes can build up a great amount of stress among employees which depreciates their health drastically and forces them to even rage quit their jobs.
It is hence important for companies to keep work-stress in check and take every step possible to keep their employees happy. Wellness programs are a good way to do so as it allows employees to relax at work and take a break from their stressful jobs.
4. Increased productivity among employees:
When employees get a collaborative team and a stress-free working environment, it is apparent for them to work hard and deliver results more quickly. This increases the productivity of employees and allow them to accomplish more in-hand tasks in less time.
Also, since wellness programs improve the health of employees and reduce absenteeism, companies at all times have the required workforce at their disposal. They can hence deliver scheduled work on or even before deadlines and make bandwidth for other side tasks.
5. Increased employee satisfaction:
Wellness programs in companies are also responsible to increase employee satisfaction rates. Employees when given a fruitful working environment and an opportunity to prove themselves, showcase a great affinity towards their company.
Also, since wellness programs improve employee productivity, workers deliver their best work which helps them to bring desired fruitful results more frequently. This also gives a push to their morale and a sense of achievement, which are major factors in influencing satisfaction from their jobs.
6. Increased morale:
With wellness programs, companies demonstrate that they care for their employees. This gives a positive boost to their morale which persuades them to excel at each given task. Morale can also be improved further if companies reward their employees for exceptional performance in wellness programs or in their associated field. This not only motivates the employee being appreciated for its efforts but also influences others to give their best as well.
7. Better company culture:
In current times, company culture is much more than the values and attributes a company and its employees share. It has become a crucial driving factor that includes everything from employee engagement rate to the type of environment a company offers.
Wellness programs allow employees from different teams to collaborate with each other and strengthen their relationships. Doing this also instigates a positive message among employees that they are cared for by their employer. All of these factors collectively strengthen the company culture, which leads to its success.
8. Increased employee retention and easier recruiting:
Employees are more likely to stay in an organization that makes them come to work energetically. Wellness programs are a good way to do so. They help employees to remain motivated to come to work, which helps companies to prevent employee turnover and retain their staff for the long haul.
Also, these programs increase the employer brand in the market which helps companies to remain competitive and attract the best talent for their organization.
Employee wellness programs come with a great set of benefits for both employees and employers. By leveraging these programs, companies encourage their staff members to stay healthy, which in turn improves their productivity.
Many employers are realizing that implementing such programs can help them create a happy working environment for their employees and improve their recruitment. These programs also build loyalty among employees towards their company and help build a better company culture.
Hence, these programs are a must for companies to implement so that they can gain profit and become successful in the long-run.
Nathan is a Military Combat Veteran and Duke MBA candidate with two decades of experience in health, wellness, and technology. Nathan is the Founder and CEO of Woliba a Software as a Service company in the wellness and engagement space. Woliba helps organizations consolidate their HR software tools into one comprehensive platform to enhance company culture, morale, engagement, and workplace wellbeing. With built-in automation and Artificial Intelligence, Woliba helps organizations easily manage wellbeing, engagement, recognition, and reward initiatives in one mobile-friendly platform.