Employers are doing everything they can to keep their employees engaged—unlimited vacation, merit-based promotions, stock option plans, etc.
Yet employee turnover is higher than ever. So what are companies missing here? Despite offering top-of-the-line benefits and establishing employee-friendly policies, they are missing something elementary and important. It is employee wellness. No matter the size or services they provide, they have to make employee wellness a top priority. It is impossible to even think of any company being successful when their employees don’t feel good about themselves or their work.
So how do you design a wellness program that’s smart, scalable, and efficient? Here is the 6-step process
1. Determine and Evaluate Employees’ Needs
Determining the needs starts with asking questions. Ask employees what they need and see how these needs align with your goals. Get information about their lifestyle and habits. Understand the challenges they face by conducting workplace surveys.
This will also help you assess the health of the workforce and determine which programs to implement. To successfully implement the wellness program, you need to understand that some employees would like to get more active while others may set targeted goals. Therefore, assess these preferences to improve participation in the program.
2. Set a Budget
Establishing a budget is a crucial step in designing the wellness program, and most organizations don’t have an unlimited budget for them. You will need to include the cost of incentives and marketing while deciding how much you can spend on the program.
To put a number to the program, employers should consider the following:
3. Analyze the Data and Establish a Plan
Based on the budget and the needs highlighted by the survey, determine what elements will work and then take a look at a few wellness programs that will meet your requirements. Generally, wellness programs include:
After conducting surveys and discussions, you should be able to establish a wellness program that meets your budget and employee needs.
4. Roll out the Wellness Program
The next step is to communicate the organization’s wellness program. Communication is vital to marketing the program and creating a culture of wellness. Therefore it is important to create a policy statement that includes the organization’s intent and incentive system.
Some of the ways for employers to communicate the program include:
5. Offer Incentives to Promote Health
Building an incentive system into a wellness program is an excellent motivator. Incentives are an effective tool to drive healthy behaviors, improve participation rates, and help employees complete a program. Incentives can take many forms, including gifts or monetary awards celebrating accomplishments.
Make wellness part of your social culture, and over time the motivation for rewards will shift from extrinsic motivation to intrinsic reinforcement. Federal and state laws may limit incentives, so employers should stay up-to-date on relevant compliance obligations.
6. Collect Feedback for Program Improvement
As with any project, collecting feedback and evaluating the wellness program is important in sustaining employee motivation and improving new programs. You might witness trends emerge which will give insights into the way employees participate and respond to wellness initiatives.
You will learn what is working and what is not and will make adjustments accordingly. Make sure to regularly brainstorm ideas for how to consistently improve the program. Over time, positive experiences and stories will emerge from those who participate in the program. Highlighting these stories will help attract non-participants and improve program completion rates.
Taking Wellness Programs to a New Level
There are many misconceptions about the effectiveness of wellness programs. Many employers believe that these programs don’t have any significant effect on healthcare spending. As a result, many leaders have their doubts about them while others choose options on the fly, doing their employees and their organization a disservice.
To achieve real health improvement, the key is to decide what you value as a company and then weave it together to build wellness programs that support healthy company culture. This isn’t always easy but rewards can be huge. As employers around the world experiment with getting their employees back to offices, the leadership should act now to make sure that workplaces are productive when they return.
To learn how a FHIR-enabled Data Activation Platform can help you in revamping your employee care management strategy, get a demo