As we look ahead to 2023, organizations face significant challenges, including a highly competitive talent market, a disengaged workforce, and pressure to keep costs under control.
To effectively navigate these challenges, it’s essential for business leaders to stay informed about the latest trends and proactively address key issues. By demonstrating a thorough understanding of these trends and taking a hands-on approach, organizations can position themselves to thrive and adapt to new realities. Shortlister has selected and analyzed the most significant emerging trends shaping the health and wellness industry for the coming year. To provide a broader perspective, we have gathered the insights of business leaders across the industry to explore how these trends shape their wellness strategies.
Whether it’s through the use of technology, a focus on mental health, or a greater emphasis on DEI efforts, these workplace wellness trends provide exciting opportunities for businesses to deploy resources and support the well-being of their employees to drive long-term success.
1) Expansion of the HR Role
Flexible work arrangements, creating a desirable work culture, and guiding organizations through economic slowdowns and inflation surges – HR departments have been in the spotlight since early 2020.
HR professionals have faced numerous challenges in recent years, and 2023 is shaping up to be a continuation of these issues, along with a few new ones.
Over the past year, we have experienced several waves of talent movement.
From the phenomenon of quiet quitting to the great resignation, workers reassessed the impact and value of work. New societal forces exacerbated the war on talent and put pressure on employers and HR teams to stay competitive.
On top of that, the accelerated digital transformation and hyper-automation augmented every job in the world, and the HR department is no different.
Digital transformation in HR operations, including increased investments in HCM technology innovation, is necessary to align skills and talent better, improve the employee experience, and design a more human-centric workplace.
However, while AI has gained widespread adoption in HCM, technologies such as cloud computing, blockchain, and virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) have yet to be embraced to the same extent by organizations.
Despite the growing reliance on data-driven decision-making in HR, many organizations still struggle to effectively collect, analyze, and utilize employee data to inform business and workforce strategies.
The main barrier to hyper-automation is the lack of expertise in combined integration, business process monitoring (BPM), and robotic process automation (RPA) among HR teams.
Going into 2023, more organizations will invest in upskilling their HR teams and expanding their capabilities.
Another area where HR plays a more prominent role is diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB). As organizations seek to create a more inclusive and welcoming culture, HR professionals are being called upon to develop and implement diversity training programs and to work with leadership to create a more diverse and inclusive workforce.
“Because of their commonalities, I see a significant overlap in the roles diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) leaders and HR leaders play within a company,” shares Ivori Johnson, Director of DEIB at ChartHop.
Johnson adds, “DEIB is evolving into what HR was originally built to provide: a safe space for employees. Soon, more companies will merge DEIB and HR as partners to lead their people — from the C-suite to entry-level employees — to think with an inclusive mindset.”
Gone are the days when HR was viewed as a purely administrative function, responsible for payroll and benefits management tasks.
HR’s role will be solidified as an irreplicable part of the board and a strategic key advisor in the upcoming year.
2) Experiences as Offerings
Nine out of ten Americans say they believe that there’s a mental health crisis in the U.S. today, according to a new survey from CNN in partnership with the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic started, 63% of Americans reported that their mental health had been negatively affected, while 53% reported negative effects on their physical health.
However, Natural Health Instructor Marianne Zander from Endeavour College highlighted an intriguing silver lining due to the pandemic – people have become more health-conscious, which has led to a surge in people wanting to learn more about their health purely for health’s sake.
Zander shared the results of a survey by Endeavour College, which found that almost half (46%) of respondents care more about their health now than before the pandemic, and nearly two-thirds (61%) of people surveyed want to learn more about health to better care for themselves and their loved ones.
Consumers’ hyperfocus on wellness has broadened its definition to encompass more than just physical fitness. The wellness industry has expanded to include a broader range of services, such as personal training, nutrition counseling, and mental health care, in order to address overall wellness.
While products still make up roughly 70% of consumer spending in the wellness industry, experience offerings such as coaching and counseling services are also becoming more popular.
To capitalize on this trend, businesses could consider providing integrated wellness experiences, such as telemedicine apps, connected devices, and virtual fitness apps, to connect communities and provide all-around wellness experiences.
The trend towards offering experiences, rather than just products or services, has also made its way into the corporate world.
One such example is the use of career coaching and mentoring programs, which provide employees with the tools they need to maximize their effectiveness in their roles.
Today’s leading organizations seek personal and professional development through experiences with higher personalization.
3) Digital Health
Compared to a decade ago, the world is different, and nowhere is this more evident than in health care. The COVID-19 pandemic further subsumed us in a digital world and accelerated the adoption of technology and digitalization, resulting in a dramatically different health and wellness landscape.
“We’ve all heard that in the first six months of the pandemic, the digital revolution advanced ten years. Nowhere is this more obvious than in health,” says Jennifer Wilson, Founder & Futurist of Miroma Project Factory.
Wilson adds, “Beyond advances in vaccine trials, we’ve also shifted to online and telehealth in big ways – and we’re just at the start of the next revolution in digital healthcare.”
From the growing acceptance of telehealth services and the rising use of data-based decision-making to the integration of AI into medical diagnostics, the healthcare space is swiftly integrating technology and new digital tools.
In the United States, the use of digital therapeutics (DTx) for healthcare purposes has significantly increased in recent years.
This trend was highlighted in the introduction of the Access to Prescription Digital Therapeutics Act in the U.S. Senate at the beginning of 2022. The bill aims to establish a dedicated Medicare benefit category for prescription digital therapeutics (PDTx), further demonstrating the growing importance and acceptance of DTx in the healthcare industry.
What’s more, digital health is also gaining momentum in the corporate world as companies realize technology has the potential to revolutionize the way companies approach employee health and well-being.
Digital health tools can help employees access healthcare services more efficiently, enhance health monitoring, and improve engagement.
Evidently, the future of the healthcare industry is digital-first.
4) Targeted & Data-Driven Care
Today’s traditional healthcare system is reactive, only addressing individuals’ health needs once they become sick or injured. However, the future of healthcare is shifting towards a proactive approach that focuses on predicting, preventing, and optimizing health – and it is primarily enabled by data.
In reviewing existing trends and research, one central theme is the emergence of targeted, data-driven, and personalized care.
With the proliferation of electronic health records, wearable technology, and other tools that collect and analyze patients’ health and behaviors, healthcare providers can better identify specific health risks and needs.
As of 2020, 30% of American adults use wearable technology, such as fitness trackers, for healthcare purposes, demonstrating the widespread popularity of these devices.
By using this data to inform care, healthcare providers can tailor interventions to each patient’s specific needs, improving the efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare delivery and ultimately leading to better patient outcomes.
There is growing recognition that a one-size-fits-all approach to health is no longer sufficient and that individualized strategies are necessary to address each individual’s unique needs and circumstances.
As this trend continues to gain momentum in 2023, it can transform how healthcare is delivered and improve employees’ overall health and well-being.
5) Primary Care Startups & Public Health Initiatives
News of record-high physician burnout and hospital staffing shortages have highlighted major issues in the healthcare industry in recent years.
Primary care physicians, who serve as the first point of contact for patients seeking medical attention, play a crucial role in the healthcare system. Still, they often struggle with high-stress levels and low pay, creating an unsustainable situation.
At the same time, younger generations are increasingly turning to the convenience of retail clinics rather than seeing a primary care physician, with many not having a primary care provider or avoiding annual check-ups for years.
These factors, along with demographic shifts and changing consumer expectations, will continue to alter and disrupt the traditional primary care landscape.
A wave of innovative startups aims to address longstanding challenges and deliver more efficient, cost-effective care in a shift from fee-for-service to value-based care (VBC).
Many of these startups focus on “concierge” medicine to deliver customized, seamless, and comprehensive experiences.
Some startups are also using high-touch technology solutions, such as patient portals, same-day appointment mobile apps, and telemedicine, to make healthcare more convenient and accessible.
Retail giants like Walmart, Amazon, and CVS are also entering the healthcare space, offering healthcare services such as vaccinations, blood tests, and medical check-ups.
According to researchers at Forrester, the amount of healthcare business conducted through retail providers will double during 2023. In other words, sites of care are transitioning from hospitals to homes, retailers, and digital platforms.
As global economic conditions result in reduced budgets for traditional primary care facilities, this trend of increased reliance on healthcare startups is expected to become more prominent.
In a rapidly evolving healthcare landscape, healthcare startups are leading the way with innovative solutions and shaping the future of care.
6) Has Telehealth Reached Its Peak?
As the COVID-19 pandemic forced individuals to seek alternative methods for receiving medical care, telehealth options saw a significant expansion.
Prior to the pandemic, the use of telehealth was only a fraction of what it was in April 2020, which saw a 38-fold increase, according to McKinsey. Despite being available through most health plans, virtual care was not widely utilized by members.
However, as the pandemic waned and healthcare providers resumed in-person operations fully, telehealth utilization dropped slightly in 2022. Despite this decrease, the demand for the convenience and distanced care provided by telehealth remains high.
The results of the 2022 WTW Global Benefits Attitudes Survey, which surveyed over 35,000 full-time employees, showed that virtual care was widely viewed favorably. When asked to compare virtual and in-person consultations, the survey found that:
- 64% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that virtual visits were more convenient.
- 64% said that virtual care required less waiting time.
- 60% agreed or strongly agreed that virtual visits were at least as good as traditional in-person consultations.
Research by Insider Intelligence further affirms this as remote patient monitoring (RPM) is still surging.
The number of individuals using wearable devices to track and collect medical data and exchange it via the internet with a medical professional is projected to increase from 17.1% in 2022 to 20% in 2023.
While telehealth utilization may decrease further in 2023, it is expected to remain the predominant delivery system for mental and behavioral health treatment. The accelerated expansion of telecare seen during the pandemic is likely to continue, albeit more sustainably and maturely. As telehealth services become more commonplace, related regulations may also continue to evolve.
7) Senior Care in the U.S. in 2023
Approximately one in every six workers in the U.S. provides care for a friend or family member. The population is aging, and more people need specialized care, so it is anticipated that this figure will rise dramatically in the upcoming years.
In fact, according to estimates from the WHO, the senior population is predicted to double by 2050.
Family members often step in to provide this care, resulting in a growing number of caregivers. Recent studies show that these caregivers devote an average of 20 hours per week to providing care, which may negatively affect their work productivity and general well-being.
As the population ages, senior care is a subject that businesses and HR experts are paying more attention to. In 2023, we will likely see a trend of companies offering more support and resources for their employees who are also caregivers for elderly loved ones.
Companies must implement policies and practices that allow for greater flexibility through remote work or more accommodating schedules to support these employees better.
It’s important to hold employees accountable for their job responsibilities, but it’s equally important to provide resources and support for caregivers. Access to caregiving resources, time off for appointments or emergencies, and even a listening ear for those feeling overwhelmed can all be part of this.
Not only does this support improve employee productivity and engagement, but it can also serve as a unique employment value proposition (EVP) initiative for companies. As the trend of senior care in the U.S. continues to grow, employees will be looking for employers who prioritize support for caregivers.
Supporting carers can lead to cost savings for organizations and employee benefits.
Caregiving can be a source of stress and anxiety, which can negatively impact employee health. Companies can help alleviate that stress and potentially reduce healthcare costs by providing assistance and guidance.
HR professionals and leaders must remember that employees don’t leave their problems at the door when they come to work.
8) DEI & Multigenerational Workforce
As the trend of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) continues to rise in the workplace, it is becoming increasingly important for employers to consider the needs of their multigenerational workforce.
With five distinct generations currently working together, it can be challenging for traditional benefits plans to address all employees’ needs adequately.
Hence, to create a successful wellness program, inclusivity must be at the forefront.
Employees are less likely to participate in wellness programs if they do not feel included or if the initiative does not consider their individual differences.
The HR and benefits teams must consider the specific factors that may put certain employees at greater risk for health conditions and the unique needs of employees from different backgrounds.
In addition, inclusivity should be woven into the fabric of an employee’s day-to-day work experience by creating gender-neutral training facilities, making facilities accessible for wheelchair users, and providing sign language interpretation at conferences and workplace events.
According to Glassdoor research, corporate investments in DEI peaked in 2021 but started to show signs of decline in 2022.
This is not only detrimental to society, but it can also lead to employee turnover.
The Hiring and Workplace Trends Report 2023 found that 62% of U.S. workers would consider leaving a company or declining a job offer if they did not believe their manager supported DEI initiatives. To retain top talent, employers must prioritize DEI and create a more inclusive and diverse work environment.
So, how can employers improve DEI in the workplace?
One approach is to work with vendors and partners to understand better the social and environmental health determinants that may affect their employees. Employers can also examine ways to enhance current benefits and resources and implement new programs and tactics to improve well-being outcomes, particularly for low-income employees. Furthermore, employers must also examine health, savings, career development, and retention by diverse cohorts when reviewing their benefits, pay, and career programs for equity.
By identifying opportunities to improve equity and aligning these efforts with their DEI strategy, employers can create a more positive and productive work environment for all employees.
Looking ahead, it’s clear that DEI in a multigenerational workforce will remain an important consideration in the realm of corporate wellness trends.
9) Financial Wellness Benefits empowering Recruitment
Record-high inflation and the rising cost of living strain employees’ pockets, hindering productivity and performance at work. A 2022 Global Benefits Attitudes Survey found that 41% of full-time employees live paycheck to paycheck.
While the latest Korn Ferry survey shows that companies plan to increase wages by 4%-4.5% in 2023, this alone may not be enough to address financial wellness concerns.
To tackle this issue, more and more companies are offering financial wellness and literacy benefits as part of their employee benefits package to help employees make informed financial decisions and improve their overall well-being and productivity.
These benefits can include financial coaching, seminars, and webinars on financial management, debt management assistance, essential money management tools, tuition assistance, and personalized financial resources.
Furthermore, the financial wellness of employees is becoming an important factor for companies in an increasingly competitive recruitment landscape.
To attract a wider pool of applicants and empower talent acquisition efforts, employers must be aware of the top financial concerns of all generations, such as student loan forgiveness for younger employees or retirement savings concerns for older workers, and address them through their benefits offerings.
A recent survey by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) found that financial incentives and benefits in the workplace have increased since the end of the pandemic, indicating a shift towards a workplace wellness culture.
Helping employees manage their finances better benefits them and can lead to improved performance and higher retention rates for the company – resulting in a win-win situation.
As the trend of financial wellness benefits continues to grow in 2023, employers and employees must take advantage of these resources.
10) Tobacco Cessation Programs
The number of adult smokers in the United States is over 34 million, and approximately 70% of smokers say they wish to stop. However, the WHO emphasizes that smoking is a difficult habit to break and that without cessation support, only 4% of tobacco users who attempt to quit will succeed.
Tobacco cessation programs, which help people quit, have become more crucial since smoking’s harmful health effects remain a significant public health concern.
Digital technologies are being introduced to the market to assist people in overcoming their nicotine addiction.
One example is a digital transdermal patch that releases nicotine at specific times to help reduce cravings. This patch is particularly useful for smokers who experience intense cravings first thing in the morning, as 75% of smokers have their first cigarette within 30 minutes of waking up.
Other digital tools supporting smoking cessation include smart lighters and cigarette cases that track smoking and provide feedback on making healthier choices.
These personalized and actionable tools can help employees understand and manage their addiction and provide a platform to be proactive about their treatment and overall health.
Finally, digital health solutions, such as smartphone apps and messaging platforms, will significantly change how tobacco cessation programs are delivered. With telemedicine, individuals can access support and resources from anywhere, at any time, making it easier for them to participate in these programs.
11) Diabetes Programs
Diabetes management programs are evolving due to the move toward data-driven care, which enables a more continuous and integrated approach to manage chronic illnesses.
This trend is a welcome change since diabetes is a significant financial burden for U.S. employers, with medical costs and lost productivity from diagnosed individuals totaling $327 billion annually, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Bluetooth-enabled meters, continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) systems, and smart insulin pens are helping improve diabetes management by allowing patients to share real-time data with their healthcare team. This creates a digital ecosystem of data-driven tools that can improve communication and collaboration between patients and their care teams.
Employees can receive customized diet and exercise plans, stress management programs, and other treatments that cater to their needs by gathering and analyzing blood sugar levels, physical activity, and other health-related indicators.
Digital and data-driven solutions empower employees to take an active role in their health and support better self-management of their condition.
Overall, this approach to diabetes management has the potential to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of care, leading to better control of diabetes and reduced complications for employees with this chronic condition.
12) Musculoskeletal Programs
Remote work arrangements – namely overworking and the physical damage of unergonomic home offices – seem to have exacerbated musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders.
Statistics from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show a 31% increase in the number of people who have fallen out of work because of back and neck problems.
Furthermore, WHO data shows that musculoskeletal disorders and low back pain are two of the dominant health problems in younger people (ages 10–49 years), leading to overall declining health.
Musculoskeletal pain is a complex issue that can be difficult to treat effectively.
Whether a treatment succeeds or fails often depends on a myriad of patient-specific characteristics, behaviors, and conditions.
However, a data-driven digital musculoskeletal solution has the potential to provide personalized care at scale by using real-time tracking, device-based exercise therapy, and continuous access to clinical staff for timely interventions.
This approach combines exercise therapy with digital guidance and health coaching and can be personalized for each individual through machine learning and AI. The system is self-learning and treats every interaction as an opportunity to improve care delivery and drive positive behavior change.
To further prevent workplace injuries, businesses can bring in musculoskeletal health experts to assess the office environment and provide guidance on posture, exercise, and nutrition.
In addition, employers may consider offering financial support for private sessions to avoid the high cost of workplace injuries, which totals $163.9 billion annually. Furthermore, research shows that investing in physiotherapy for musculoskeletal health can yield a return on investment (ROI) of almost 100:1 for every dollar spent.
Using the latest data-driven care can revolutionize workplace interventions for rehabilitating musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), particularly among physically demanding employees.
13) Large Employers Focus on EAP Enhancements
As mental health concerns continue to rise globally, it’s more important than ever for employers to provide their employees with access to mental health resources and services.
While the majority of employers (93%) offer Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs), they are often underutilized by employees.
Sarah Greenaway, Marketing and Communications Director at Indago Digital, comments on this trend, “There’s been a lot of talk about perks and EAP schemes recently, and research shows that spending on these initiatives is at an all-time high and increasing.
But burnout is also at an all-time high, and many employees cite anxiety and burnout as a result of unrealistic demands and toxic workplace cultures as two major causes.”
That’s why 70% of all large employers plan benefit enhancements for 2023, focusing on providing more accessible, comprehensive services.
Enhancements to EAPs can include virtual therapy, online support groups, and state-of-the-art digital platforms that provide mental health assessments and personalized wellness plans.
In addition to simply giving traditional referrals to mental health professionals, companies can also offer digital tools, educational courses, and even direct access to in-house coaches or specialized therapists.
To increase the utilization of EAPs, large employers are also leveraging technology and mobile apps with features such as 24/7 chat-based support, self-assessment tools, and resources for stress and anxiety management. By offering more valuable services, employers can see reduced absenteeism, increased productivity, and higher employee satisfaction and loyalty levels.
In the words of Sarah Greenaway, who shared their experience, “We’ve focused this year on building structures and processes that put empathy front and center of our approach to employee well-being and culture and continue to build on this year’s work will remain a business imperative for us in 2023.”
14) Data as a Roadmap to Personalized Wellness Plans
Personalization will become even more significant in 2023, as a recent McKinsey report found that over 70% of consumers expect personalized interactions with the brands they support.
And when their expectations aren’t met, over 75% become frustrated.
This trend is especially relevant in the health and wellness industry, where consumers are increasingly willing to share their personal data in exchange for more personalized wellness treatments and services.
But personalization isn’t just about meeting consumer expectations – it’s also about addressing healthcare disparities.
Even high-earning employees of large U.S. employers face disparities, with Black, Hispanic and Latino, Asian, and LGBTQ+ individuals being less likely to report receiving the care they need and more likely to consider switching employers for benefits-related reasons.
So, what can companies do to address these disparities and create more personalized wellness programs?
The answer is simple: data.
By gathering data through assessments like biometric tests and surveys, HR professionals can evaluate their organization’s overall health and wellness and identify areas that need particular focus.
Voice of the Employee (VoE) solutions allow for the collection and analysis of employee opinions, perceptions, and feelings. While annual surveys are still commonly used to gather employee feedback, they may not capture more frequent changes in perception that organizational changes, work/life conflicts, or market events may trigger.
With this data, companies can tailor their wellness offerings to meet the changing needs of their employees, whether through individual healthcare plans or customizable wellness benefits.
Not only does this data-driven approach lead to better health outcomes and cost containment, but it also enables companies to address health equity in the workplace.
In the year ahead, we expect to see a rise in personalized wellness programs that leverage the power of data and open communication to create a superior experience for employees. By adopting this trend, companies will be well-positioned to stand out in a competitive market.
15) Meditation & Mindfulness Offerings in the Spotlight
Mindfulness — the practice of being in the present — is another growing trend within businesses.
“While there’s nothing new about the ancient practice of meditation, it’s hard to find time to be mindful and present in our fast-paced world, and stillness is an increasingly sought-after commodity,” comments Naturopath Lecturer at Endeavour College, Tracy Gaibisso.
More and more people are turning to meditation and mindfulness to find inner peace and balance.
A report by McKinsey found that consumers in the United States and Brazil had the highest interest and spending on these products and services. This trend is supported by recent studies showing that meditation can be as effective as medication for anxiety disorders and lead to a 30% reduction in stress-related symptoms, which can be a precursor to serious illness.
As a result, companies and organizations of all sizes recognize the value of incorporating these practices into their employee wellness programs.
Meditation and mindfulness offerings have seen a tremendous uptick in interest; from corporate retreats and on-site meditation classes to apps and online courses, the options for accessing meditation and mindfulness resources are growing rapidly.
As the demand for these services continues to rise, it is clear that meditation and mindfulness are here to stay as powerful tools for personal and professional growth.
16) Overall Wellbeing through Behavioral Health
Behavioral health is a vital component of overall well-being that is often overlooked in the pursuit of physical health.
In fact, research suggests that these two facets of health are closely interconnected, with 68% of adults with mental health disorders also struggling with medical conditions.
Ignoring behavioral health can also have serious financial consequences – the cost of managing physical health for a patient with underlying behavioral issues is three times more expensive than for a patient without these challenges.
What’s more, the negative consequences of neglecting behavioral health go beyond just financial costs. It can increase harmful habits and behaviors, such as alcohol and tobacco use, sleep disruptions, and sedentary lifestyles.
This is particularly concerning given that seven of every ten people visit a doctor for reasons related to behavioral health, according to the Maine Health Access Foundation.
To truly support overall well-being, it is necessary to address behavioral health in a comprehensive manner. This can include increasing access to evidence-based treatments, like cognitive behavioral therapy, and adopting collaborative care models that bring behavioral health professionals into primary care settings to provide integrated care for both physical and mental health concerns.
The good news is that employees who use digital tools for behavioral health support report better mental health, with 72% of frequent users stating their mental health has improved in the past year compared to just 20% of non-users.
For these reasons, many companies have already committed to providing high-quality behavioral health care to their employees and dependents, focusing on whole-person health.
According to a survey by Willis Towers Watson, 68% of employers currently offer digital behavioral health support, with an additional 16% planning to provide access to these digital health services in the next two years.
As we move into 2023, employers of all sizes must prioritize comprehensive behavioral healthcare coverage in their employee benefits packages. The prevalence of mental health issues in the workforce makes it clear that addressing behavioral health is not only a moral imperative but also a business necessity.
17) Omnichannel Approach to Fitness
In 2020, the fitness tech industry experienced significant growth of 29.1%, even as the overall physical activity sector shrank. Millions of consumers redirected their exercise-related spending toward digital platforms, such as streaming and apps, for their workouts.
“One of the trends I see happening in the fitness industry is the popularity of online workout classes and apps like Peloton, IFIT, Tonal, Zwift, etc.” reflects Matt Claes, Founder of Weight Loss Made Practical.
As the fitness industry evolves in the post-pandemic world, it’s becoming increasingly important for companies to consider an omnichannel fitness approach to meet the needs of their employees.
By offering a range of options, including both in-person and digital services, companies can cater to the diverse preferences of fitness enthusiasts. Digital services can stand out and appeal to a broader range of customers by offering enhanced gamification, personalized workouts enabled by technology, and on-demand streaming technologies.
For example, some customers may prefer the personal connection and human interaction of a physical studio, while others may prefer the convenience and flexibility of digital content.
“A big challenge for many people, especially employees with a 9 to 5, is finding the time and motivation to work out. Instead of going to a physical gym, many people opt to work out in the comfort of their homes with these online services,” adds Matt Claes.
The trend of an omnichannel approach to fitness presents tremendous opportunities to improve health outcomes and increase productivity in the workplace.
18) Nutrition as a Way towards Accomplishing Wellness Goals
While nutrition has always been one of the pillars of wellness, today’s consumers focus on finding a balance between sustainability, health, and taste in their food choices.
Consumers are paying closer attention to nutrition labels, looking to reduce sugar and adopt more sustainable eating habits. Plant-based diets, in particular, have seen a surge in popularity, with 35% of consumers in the U.K., U.S., and Germany regularly consuming plant-based milk. This trend towards healthier eating is not just about taste but also about helping individuals achieve their wellness goals.
“There is a significant mind shift toward eating right for the body and brain in the health and wellness market,” comments Maria Shriver, Founder at Shriver Media & MOSH.
In fact, more than a third of consumers worldwide plan to increase their spending on nutrition-related products and services, such as nutrition apps, diet programs, juice cleanses, and subscription food services, in the coming year.
Not only are individuals taking charge of their nutrition, but employers also recognize the importance of good nutrition in the workplace.
Many companies are now offering healthier food options and nutrition education to their employees to promote optimal physical and mental health and improve productivity and overall quality of life.
The trend towards better nutrition in the workplace is driven by the understanding that good nutrition is crucial for overall wellness and that investing in the nutritional well-being of the workforce can have numerous benefits.
19) Sleep-Enhancing Products
One in three Americans struggle with poor sleep, and one in ten has insomnia. That’s a problem, considering how vital sleep is for productivity, stress levels, and overall well-being.
According to a recent survey, 67% of Americans reported sleeping more or less than they desired since the start of the pandemic. This lack of shuteye is costing us, with one Harvard study estimating that poor sleepers lose 11.3 days of work annually.
To combat this, more and more companies offer sleep-enhancing products and sleep programs that include coaching with sleep specialists, education on sleep deficiency, and screening for untreated sleep disorders.
These programs are part of a growing trend towards prioritizing sleep in corporate wellness, recognizing its importance in maintaining productivity and reducing stress.
In addition to these traditional sleep programs, there are also exciting innovations in sleep technology, such as pneumatic sensors that can be placed under a mattress to track respiratory rate, heartbeats, and body movements, as well as sound sensors that detect snoring and gaps in breathing.
This data can then be connected to other wellness programs, such as exercise services, to provide personalized recommendations based on sleep quality.
Investing in sleep-enhancing products and programs isn’t just good for employees – it’s also good for an organization’s bottom line.
Employers must reconsider a “live to work” mentality and incorporate sleep-enhancing products into their workplace wellness strategy to create a culture that allows their employees to thrive.
The recent macro trends – the changing nature of jobs, rising employee expectations, and the diversity agenda have something in common – they’re all topics with people at the core. Therefore, organizations that want to thrive in an era of rapid and unpredictable change must adopt a people-first culture with wellness at the forefront.
As we move into 2023, creating a best-in-class workplace is synonymous with implementing strategies to improve the overall well-being of a workforce.
- 2020 Global Wellness Trends (Global Wellness Summit)
- Diabetes Fast Facts (CDC.gov)
- The Healthcare Industry Is Crumbling Due To Staffing Shortages (Forbes)
- Predictions 2023: Retail Health, Decentralized Trials, And Wellness Are On The Front Lines (Forrester)
- One year later, a new wave of pandemic health concerns (APA)
- Feeling good: The future of the $1.5 trillion wellness market (McKinsey)
- Health & Benefit Strategies for 2023 (Mercer)
- The value of getting personalization right—or wrong—is multiplying (McKinsey)
- How to thrive in the global wellness market (McKinsey)
- Meditation Is as Effective as Common Medication for Anxiety Disorder (Global Wellness Institute)
- 2022 Employee Wellness Industry Trends Report (Wellable)
- Behavioral Health Spending Correlates with Higher Overall Healthcare Spending (LBLgroup)
- Fact Sheet: Tobacco (WHO)
- Behavioral Health: Fixing A System In Crisis (Modern Healthcare)
- Infographic: Employers prioritize employee mental health (WTW)
- 2021 Global Wellness Economy: Looking Beyond COVID (Global Wellness Institute)
- Smoking Cessation: A Report of the Surgeon General (HHS)
- Telehealth: A quarter-trillion-dollar post-COVID-19 reality? (McKinsey)
- 2022 Global Benefits Attitudes Survey (WTW)
- Digital Health Trends to Watch for 2023 (Insider Intelligence)
- More Than One in Six American Workers Also Act as Caregivers (Gallup)
- Fast Facts About Working Caregivers (CaregiversLibrary)
- Pay in 2023: A Difficult Balancing Act (Korn Ferry)
- Financial Well-being Employer Survey: Focus on COVID-19 and Diversity Goals (EBRI)
- Fact Sheet: Ageing and health (WHO)
- Who cares about diversity, equity and inclusion? (Glassdoor)
- Indeed & Glassdoor’s Hiring and Workplace Trends Report 2023 (Indeed)