Life often feels like it is made up of impossible choices. Binge watch that addictive show on Netflix, or get to bed so you can wake up rested? Finish your to-do list for the day, or take time to exercise? Eat something healthy, or eat something delicious? Save money for your business, or care for your employees?
If your company is stuck on that last one, a corporate wellness program may be the answer to your problem. Employers shouldn’t have to choose between protecting their budgets and caring for their people!
Corporate wellness programs are company led initiatives to help employees stay physically and mentally healthy and develop beneficial lifestyle habits. They usually include incentives to motivate employees toward a healthy diet and physical fitness, and they often also have educational components to help with everything from disease and stress management to substance abuse and smoking cessation.
Corporate wellness programs have gained considerable popularity in the past decade, mainly because of the financial relief they can provide for companies. However, effective programs reap far more than just monetary benefits.
Here are seven reasons why your company needs a corporate wellness program.
Corporate wellness programs reduce health-related costs.
Over the past fifty years, sedentary lifestyles, unhealthy habits, and high stress levels have led to an epidemic of chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. Well designed corporate wellness programs provide incentives for participants to actively work toward preventing health problems altogether, managing chronic diseases, and building healthy habits. These things combined can help individuals be healthier and spend less money on health care over time.
1. Reduced Health Care Costs.
Of course, preventing disease cuts health care costs, but corporate wellness programs are also known for educating and encouraging employees who do have chronic diseases to manage them before developing severe complications. Routine medical attention and health interventions end up costing companies and employees far less money than medical emergencies.
2. Lower health insurance costs.
Health insurance can cost companies a tremendous amount of money. However, good health insurance is an invaluable bargaining chip for recruiting and retaining top talent, so companies must provide it if they want the best employees. Since insurance costs depend on risk for health problems, incorporating a solid corporate wellness program that reduces risk to your employees gives you negotiating power with major health insurance companies.
3. Reduced absenteeism and sick days.
When your employees are healthy and fit, they do not require as many days off for sickness or doctor visits. Corporate wellness programs can help cut the costs of lost productivity.
Corporate wellness programs can help your employees be better at getting stuff done.
4. Reduced presenteeism.
While absenteeism is an obvious hit to productivity, ever increasing “presenteeism,” or working while sick, is thought to actually cost companies far more each year (1). Whether suffering from pain, general malaise, or depression, quality work cannot be completed when an employee is present in body, but not in mind or heart. Simply being at work when suffering can compound the negative effects of illness, leading to even more presenteeism and greater loss of productivity. Corporate wellness programs can help minimize physical and mental health issues that contribute to presenteeism, thereby increasing productivity.
Healthy Employees = Happy Employees.
There is nothing better than when a company is known for being an enjoyable place to work. This is easier to achieve when you treat your employees well. Implementing a corporate wellness program that effectively communicates the importance of your employees’ wellbeing will lead to happy employees whose testimonies will develop this reputation for your business.
5. Improved Morale.
When employees are not worried about their health or stressed over healthcare costs, they are happier. Happier employees have better attitudes and do better work than unhappy employees.
6. Increased Loyalty.
People care about those who care about them. A corporate wellness program clearly communicates that your company wants the best for its employees. That sentiment alone can develop into a sense of loyalty to the company. This is increasingly important in a world where most millennials expect to change jobs once every three years (2). To retain good employees, companies must make sure there is an incentive for them to stay beyond completing work projects or moving up the corporate ladder.
7. Deeper Relationships and Personal Responsibility.
As employees work toward personal goals, compete for incentives, and develop healthy lifestyles alongside their coworkers, their interactions go beyond day-to-day collaboration through email and meetings. This builds a team mentality and strengthens relationships between employees and their coworkers, clients, and the company itself. These deeper relationships further influence loyalty and can eventually strengthen personal responsibility in the success of the company.
While we often feel we are stuck between a rock and a hard place, it is comforting to know that sometimes we do find solutions that allow for the best of both worlds. So while you still may have to choose whether to watch four hours of Orange is the New Black tonight or wake up refreshed tomorrow, at least you don’t have to choose between saving money and caring for your employees.
As you look into establishing a corporate wellness program, remember physical activity is a major component for reducing the risk of chronic health problems. You can set goals for fitness activity and keep your employees from the frustration of having to make an impossible choice by incorporating FitDesk into your program. FitDesk can help employees get fit without interrupting their schedules. Contact us today for bulk pricing!