Why Workplace Health and Wellness Programs Matter
These important HR priorities can impact productivity
It used to be that companies mostly provided health insurance for full-time employees but otherwise weren’t too involved in health and wellness in the workplace. As time went on, however, HR professionals found out that there were things they might be able to do that would help their employees be healthier, which would have an impact on the cost of providing health insurance as well as boost overall productivity and well-being.
Using predictive HR analytics as they became available, HR staff were able to determine which actions they could take and decide on health and wellness programs to put in place that would have the most positive impact. The beginning of health and wellness programs included discounts and vouchers for gym memberships and covering yearly well visits to promote preventive care, but recent years have seen even more steps taken to encourage and contribute to employee health and wellness.
On-Site Fitness Programs
Instead of giving vouchers or discounts for gym memberships, some companies have decided to combat 8 hours a day of sitting with on-site fitness classes during breaks or after work, while others have spearheaded the forming of after work walking groups by employees themselves. Employees often enjoy spending time together outside of their work duties and are more likely to stick with a fitness regimen when they have others encouraging them and holding them accountable.
Expanded Healthy Eating Options
In many companies with health and wellness in the workplace programs, on-site cafeterias have evolved into upscale eateries that offer organic food and other healthy choices to support those who want to eat healthier. In addition to providing healthy food, some employers have begun to conduct weight loss challenges to encourage healthy habits both in and out of the office.
On-Site Health Care
Larger companies may even bring a health clinic on site to provide routine health care like flu shots as well as other types of health care. Employees appreciate not needing to leave work to see a doctor and tend to follow through on care better when it’s right there on site. If an everyday health clinic isn’t feasible, one-time or yearly clinics for flu shots or other preventive care may be offered.
Choosing what to include in a company’s health and wellness plan can be challenging when resources are limited, but HR analytics can provide information about your employees’ health and what they want in order to determine where to allocate those resources.
Promoting new health and wellness programs will lead to increased productivity, less sick time, and greater employee satisfaction. Retention will likely be improved as well, meaning that several major HR goals can be met by making employee health and wellness a priority.
Florida Tech offers human resource management degrees that train HR professionals in best practices such as starting, administering, and improving health and wellness programs. Learn more about our off-site programs and the ways that our flexible programs can give you the training you need.