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Benefits of Wellness Programs in the Workplace

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Wellness companies provide corporations with wellness programs that aim to support and encourage employees to make healthier lifestyle changes.  

Hence, it’s easy to conclude that employees are a priceless asset for every company. Ensuring their overall well-being is of utmost importance because it directly impacts company culture, productivity, and the organization’s success. An excellent way to support workers’ well-being is by providing wellness programs in the workplace.  

In fact, as of 2020, 81% of large companies and 53% of small businesses offer some type of wellness program. Therefore, it is evident that implementing employee wellness programs is becoming a high priority for businesses.  

What are Wellness Programs in the Workplace?

Wellness programs refer to health initiatives that promote employees’ physical, emotional and mental health. Therefore, they might include services and activities such as fitness facilities, health screenings, disease management, or yoga classes.  

In the past, such programs were only offered by primary physicians and insurance companies. However, since employers are now more aware of the significance of employee well-being, there is an increasing trend in developing wellness programs at work.   

Companies often offer incentives like discounts, cash rewards, or making additional contributions to employees’ health savings accounts to encourage workers to participate and stay committed to these programs.  

Why are Wellness Programs Important in the Workplace?

Wellness programs in the workplace help attract new talent, increase employee retention, and reduce turnover. This is because employees value companies that care for their well-being.  

In return, workers feel appreciated and valued, which boosts their satisfaction, morale, and productivity.   

In addition, wellness programs help employees become more aware of their overall health and well-being and motivate them to make lifestyle changes. And healthy employees don’t take as many sick days, resulting in lower absenteeism rates and decreased healthcare costs for companies.  

For instance, a company that feels its workforce is under a lot of stress and wants to help them relieve it can offer yoga or meditation classes. Or, if many employees are affected by a health condition, providing a disease management problem can improve the quality of their lives. Also, workers who have difficulty focusing because of a lack of sleep can benefit from spaces designed for naps.  

Benefits of Wellness Programs in the Workplace

An investment in the wellness of employees is like an investment in the company itself. Wellness programs in the workplace have benefits for employers and employees. Their goal is not only to improve workers’ health but also to create a company culture that focuses on the well-being of its workforce. 

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Effects of Wellness Programs in the Workplace

There are numerous effects of wellness programs in the workplace. From increasing productivity and morale to strengthening relationships and building a positive atmosphere, wellness programs in the workplace bring about positive outcomes.   

According to research, employees in good health are more productive and better performing at work. Workers that are rested and energized are motivated to do their tasks.   

What is more, wellness programs boost employee morale, and participating in one creates feelings of fulfillment and content in most employees. And increased morale leads to greater commitment and loyalty toward the company.  

Also, offering workers a chance to collaborate outside of work fosters and boosts friendships. When employees have a relationship with their co-workers, it gives them a sense of belonging. Strong relations help create a positive working environment and enhance collaboration.  

How to Implement Wellness Programs in the Workplace 

There are two ways of implementing a wellness program in the workplace: the company can do it internally or hire an outside provider to help.  

However, no matter the way, according to SHRM, it is essential to take the proper steps before implementing a wellness program to ensure its success.  

  • Conduct research and collect data about employees’ needs.  
  • Obtain support from management for funding and approving policies.  
  • Form a team to handle the implementation and management of the program.  
  • Set goals and objectives that will help the company and the staff.  
  • Establish a budget for the program.  
  • Develop a plan and strategies for the program delivery.  
  • Select incentives to achieve high employee participation and engagement.  
  • Communicate the program, its importance, and its positive effects on employees.  
  • Execute the program and collect constant feedback.  
  • Adjust and optimize the program to ensure it fits workers’ needs.  

Types of Wellness Programs in the Workplace

Today, companies realize there is more to wellness than just physical health. Ensuring that the workforce is healthy is significant, but it is also crucial they are productive and engaged.  

Since there are many approaches to improving employees’ well-being, wellness programs in the workplace can be pretty versatile, and some of them might include:  

  • On-site fitness centers  
    • Support employees’ physical health by offering on-site centers and time to do exercise during working hours.  
  • Yoga classes  
    • Yoga classes are effective in promoting self-care at work. In addition, yoga and meditation are great tools for relieving stress.  
  • Free healthy food 
    • Healthy food has a major impact on nutrition and overall wellness. Additionally, the cafeteria can support interaction between the whole staff.  
  • Health screenings 
    • Biometric screenings help detect health conditions early and raise awareness about workers’ overall health.  
  • Disease management 
    • Help employees who suffer from chronic diseases immensely improve their quality of life.  
  • Smoking cessation  
    • Provide smokers who are trying to quit with the necessary support and resources for the process.  
  • Worker assistance programs 
    • Since wellness also includes emotional and mental health, offering assistance with issues such as anxiety, stress, or substance abuse conveys compassion and gives workers a boost in confidence.  
  • Space for naps 
    • The possibility to nap or only relax in peace can boost employee productivity. Moreover, naps are scientifically proven to increase mental ability and boost mood.  
Written by Shortlister Editorial Team
Written by Shortlister Editorial Team