Table of Contents Hide
- What is Employee Wellness?
- What are Some of the HR Areas that are Influenced by Employee Wellness?
- What are Employee Wellness Programs?
- Employee Wellness Program Benefits
- Employee Wellness Programs Examples
- How to Begin an Employee Wellness Program
- Companies that are Focusing on Employee Wellness
The benefit of employees’ wellness programs extends far beyond complimentary meals and gym memberships. This article will tell you more about what employee wellness programs can achieve for your company.
What is Employee Wellness?
The general health of an employee or group of employees is referred to as employee wellness. It includes physical as well as emotional health and well-being.
This can assist firms like yours handle a variety of problems:
- Employees that are happier will naturally prefer to stay where they are pleased, which minimizes turnover.
- Happier employees are naturally more productive, assisting you in achieving more organizational goals.
- Aside from business, assisting your staff in living better, more balanced lives is simply the right thing to do and can help your company culture grow.
There is also software built expressly to assist corporations in improving organizational-wide employee wellness. Mobile applications, wearable devices, cloud-based dashboards to track progress, on-demand educational content, incentive and rewards systems, gamification, social networking capabilities, and other features are common.
What are Some of the HR Areas that are Influenced by Employee Wellness?
Knowing that employee wellness initiatives can make your company more appealing to job prospects and current employees, the next step is to determine where you should concentrate your efforts.
Here are three critical areas to focus on to start your employee wellness activities in a manageable manner, with a focus on starting small and growing up.
#1. Employee experience
Employee experience is a term that refers to everything an employee senses and experiences while working for your firm, from how they feel in the physical area around them to how they interact with coworkers.
As opposed to employee engagement, employee experience which can be high or low depending on how involved a person is, is an all-encompassing term that refers to everything an employee encounters or feels while at work. However, the experience will undoubtedly influence their level of engagement. For example, if an employee works in a windowless office with flickering artificial lighting (which speaks to their experience), their level of engagement is likely to be poor.
While employee wellness software cannot replace windows, it can assist HR departments with identifying emphasis areas to help improve the overall employee experience. Here are a few elements that are typically seen in employee wellness software that can aid in these efforts:
- Management of employee benefits: This feature ensures that employees are aware of and take advantage of all available benefits, such as gym membership reimbursement, mental health resources, and personal budgeting advice.
- Coaching and monitoring of employee health: Even if your firm reimburses gym memberships, some employees may prefer a more hands-on approach. Some employee wellness software includes a portal via which employees can access individualized health coaching and track their progress toward a healthier lifestyle.
- Management of incentives: Many businesses now provide workplace wellness programs or incentives that pay employees with a stipend or reward points to spend on anything from ergonomic office equipment to workout apparel and even outdoor equipment like tents or bicycles. An incentive management function allows employees to see how much of their stipend is left and what they can spend it on.
#2. DEI (Diversity, equality, and inclusion)
As previously said, every aspect of the employee experience influences employee wellness, and this is especially true when it comes to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) issues. For example, if an employee feels excluded or disregarded due to their background, their overall employee wellness suffers.
So, how might employee wellness software assist with addressing concerns of diversity, equity, and inclusion?
Here are a few suggested approaches:
- Include DEI training as part of your workplace wellness program. Given that having a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace has been demonstrated to promote employee engagement and improve employee wellness, it stands to reason that DEI training should be included as part of your wellness program. The majority of employee wellness software has a content library where this can be placed.
- Make certain that your workplace wellness program offers benefits that will appeal to a wide spectrum of employees. Offering physical activity benefits that encourage employees to go to the gym or rewarding employees who run a particular number of kilometers per week can be beneficial to employees who enjoy this type of activity. Consider how alienating it is to be continuously reminded of those benefits if you are unable to take advantage of them. Offering a variety of wellness benefits, such as acupuncture, meditation, yoga, and others, can help guarantee that everyone is included.
- Consider providing a variety of flexible holidays in addition to the most popular ones. For approximately a dozen federally recognized holidays, most firms offer their employees the day off. Rather than attempting to anticipate every possible holiday that each of your employees may like to observe, you can provide one or more floating or flexible holidays that employees may use at their leisure.
What are Employee Wellness Programs?
Employee wellness programs are initiatives made by employers to improve employee health and assist individual employees in overcoming specific health-related issues. The business can provide mandatory employee training, staff seminars, or even collaborate with a third-party supplier that provides a variety of wellness initiatives.
Employees are vital assets to any organization, and ensuring their good mental and physical health puts them in a good position to perform well. The health and wellness of an organization’s employees typically have a direct impact on the company’s productivity and revenues. Many firms see this and are willing to invest in such initiatives.
Employee Wellness Program Benefits
Although the benefits of an employee wellness program may be difficult to notice at first glance, employees who are healthy frequently bring a variety of benefits to other employees as well as the companies for which they work. Here are some of the benefits of an employee wellness program.
#1. Increased Productivity
Employees who eat well and exercise frequently are more likely to be productive than those who do not. Poor health practices are typically associated with high levels of unproductivity, which eventually leads to increased health risks and chronic diseases.
#2. A high level of employee morale
Employees feel valued and appreciated thanks to wellness programs. Employees are happy when they believe their employers recognize and esteem them. The availability of wellness initiatives frequently results in more enthusiastic employees at work.
#3. Improve employee recruitment and retention
Good wellness initiatives will assist businesses in both hiring and retaining the best staff. When it comes to choosing an employer, many people are heavily affected by the availability of health care and other benefits. Wellness plans also play an important part in employee retention by keeping employees loyal.
#4. Lower absenteeism
Workplaces with comprehensive wellness programs have lower absences because their employees are healthier and have less stress, resulting in cost savings.
#5. Lower health hazards
Helping employees adopt healthy behaviors like eating well, exercising, and not smoking reduces health risks. Low health risks result in lower healthcare costs.
#6. Fostering employee bonding
Some initiatives allow employees to participate in non-work-related activities like joining a sports team, going to the gym, or eating lunch together. Coworker engagement promotes bonding, which helps teams perform better together.
Employee Wellness Programs Examples
Here are a few examples of employee wellness initiatives that can be implemented at work:
#1. A nutritious lunch and snacks
With only a few minutes to eat lunch, many employees settle for fast food. Employers can provide their employees adequate time during lunch to go to the gym, play a sport, or even go home to eat a healthy prepared meal. Companies like Google have cafeterias that serve catered snacks and meals to their employees throughout the day, allowing employees from various teams to socialize and establish new acquaintances.
Healthy snack delivery services have also recently developed. Such firms deliver healthful snacks to employee offices rather than forcing them to go out and find sustenance. Because everyone has to eat, good snack and lunch programs, as well as workplace promotion of healthy eating, are appealing to everyone.
#2. Assistance Programs
Employee wellness programs should address not just the employees’ bodies but also their thoughts. Employers can help employees deal with difficulties including substance misuse, stress, anxiety, and depression. Many work-related stress concerns that employees have can be addressed through guided support programs that take place outside of the workplace. Such programs assist employees in achieving peace of mind so that they can perform to their full potential. They increase the employer’s and employees’ trust and contentment.
A snooze after lunch on a busy day always leaves you feeling refreshed. As a result, forward-thinking organizations like Asana, Zappos, and Facebook frequently have specific nap rooms where workers who want to take a quick nap after lunch can go. After a little nap, employees can return to their projects with renewed vigor. Naps have been shown in studies to provide productivity-boosting benefits.
#4. Physical activities
Employees who sit for lengthy periods of time in a workplace need to exercise or move about. Some businesses offer on-site gyms and fitness classes to assist their employees stay fit. Some companies even provide their employees with after-work workout clubs, swimming pools, and sports fields.
#5. Participation in community service activities
Many people feel good and fulfilled after performing nice deeds and assisting others. Employers can plan a day for their employees to volunteer in the community. Employees can organize fundraisers and clubs for subjects they care about. Such initiatives also aid in the development of closer working connections among employees.
How to Begin an Employee Wellness Program
The basic steps for developing a successful employee wellness program at work are as follows.
#1. Establish goals that will benefit both the organization and the employees.
It is critical to keep your main goal in mind when developing a wellness program. Ensure that all aspects of the program deliver benefits to both the employees and the organization. It is critical that wellness programs adapt to your employees’ target demographic.
#2. Form a dedicated team
A comprehensive wellness program needs a significant amount of time and effort to develop. It is prudent to put together a strong team capable of handling the job. Although HR will most likely lead the team, it should also include people who have a good understanding of the workforce and are interested in creating a healthy workplace.
#3. Gather data
Conduct a thorough study by speaking with staff to discover problem areas. Face-to-face meetings and internal polls can help with this.
#4. Create a strategy
After gathering the necessary data, the next stage is to define the wellness program’s goals and tactics for achieving them. Steps for evaluating the initiative on a regular basis should also be developed.
#5. Spread the word about the program
Employees need to be informed about the wellness program. They should be able to comprehend the schemes at hand, the significance of wellness, and the beneficial impact it will have on their lives.
#6. Gather feedback and modify the wellness program
A successful employee wellness program is constantly improved. To improve the program and make employees healthy, the team should always be open to new ideas and input.
Companies that are Focusing on Employee Wellness
These businesses are pioneers in delivering superior wellness support.
Take a look at what these four businesses are doing to encourage wellness within their organizations.
Microsoft encourages employee wellness by hosting health screening events, providing onsite health care services, and providing plenty of physical activity opportunities such as free Zumba classes, walking and running tracks, and sports courts.
On-site grocery shopping and cafes with healthy food selections make it even easier for their employees to eat well.
This tech company’s powerful wellness program includes Asana Unlimited PTO, daily yoga programs, nap rooms, and an in-house culinary team serving three meals per day.
#3. Motley Fool
The Motley Fool places a high value on physical and mental wellness. In addition to free fitness classes and personal training sessions, they provide a 50% reimbursement for race registration expenses.
What happened to recess? Return it to Zappos. Employees spend an hour per day engaging in active recreation. In addition, Zappos just built a jam area where employees can unwind with free music instruction and access to instruments.
It is critical to prioritize your employees’ wellness. Employee well-being programs are evolving from a “nice-to-have” to a “must-have.” Try out these ideas on your team and see what kind of feedback you get. Once you’ve identified a few choices that employees are enthusiastic about, you can begin to implement them.
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