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4 Reasons You Should Launch an Employee Wellness Program (and How to Get Started!)

July 7th, 2017

When Google first began, they did something different than most startups. They instituted an employee wellness program. Since then, they’ve consistently earned accolades for it.

So, you’re not Google. That’s ok. You don’t have to be a huge corporate empire to take advantage of all that employee wellness programs can offer.

In fact, smaller and medium-size companies – with narrower margins and higher turnover – stand to gain a lot from such programs, including:

More control over healthcare costs.

When your company encourages healthy living ­– with opportunities and resources available to employees ­– it’s eventually going to pay off in the form of better controlled and even lower medical costs. In fact, according to the Society for Human Resource Management, HR professionals reported the top two most successful activities in terms of helping organizations control the costs of health care in 2016 were 1) offering consumer-directed health plans; and 2) creating an organizational culture that promotes health and wellness.

Less stress.

Employee wellness programs oftentimes focus on one key area that’s a problem for many American workers: stress. This is especially important for those in high-demand jobs. When you’re stressed, you’re more likely to engage in unhealthy behavior. But a focus on wellness – such as encouraging walking during lunch, offering healthy meals and snacks at work, and providing opportunities for social engagement – can all go a long way in combating stress.

Improved productivity & performance.

It’s no surprise that employees who are healthier are not only less likely to be sick or injured, but also more productive. Not only that, but performance is improved, too. When you’re healthier, your brain is better able to focus and your body can stay energized and motivated for longer.

The ability to attract better talent.

A wellness program shows your dedication to the health and well-being of employees. And cultivating a reputation for employee wellness throughout the community can help you attract higher-quality talent as a result.

These are just a few examples of the many benefits that can be realized through an employee wellness program. But if you’ve never had one before at work, it can be hard to know where to start. Take a look at these tips for help:

  • Begin with a survey. When it comes to the features of a wellness program, the possibilities are endless. Find out from your employees what types of services and programs are most important to them.
  • Consider your employee’s lifestyles. Do you have a lot of smokers on staff? Are employees overweight? Are they taking breaks throughout the day? When you think about the health and lifestyles of your employees today, it’s easier to determine which wellness programs they’d most benefit from.
  • Schedule a health fair to kick off your wellness program. Offer free blood pressure checks, flu shots, smoking cessation resources and cholesterol screenings. Many times, local hospitals and health clinics can coordinate such events with employers.
  • Take small steps. An effective wellness program doesn’t have to be complicated and expensive. You can start with small, simple steps, like keeping healthy snacks on hand, only ordering healthy foods for lunch meetings, stocking the company fridge with bottled water and making it easier for employees to incorporate exercise into their workday.

Interested in learning more about how to implement a wellness program at work? Read this post about creating an effective wellness program for your Upstate SC business. You can also give TRUE Group a call. As your staffing and HR partner in Columbia, SC, we’re 100 percent focused on your company’s success. Together, we can identify your upcoming staffing and HR needs and develop a proactive, cost-effective strategy that will deliver real bottom-line results. Contact us today to learn more.

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