Business owners who launch workplace health and wellness programs can enjoy a wide-range of valuable benefits, not just for their employees, but for the entire company.
Outside of a healthier and happier team, such programs can also increase productivity, save money, and even enhance your brand’s image among current and prospective employees.
If you’re looking for a relatively simple way to motivate your staff and increase loyalty, workplace wellness programs should be at the top of your list. The following are just a few of most powerful benefits participating companies can experience.
Improved employee productivity
The most valuable benefit of employee health and wellness programs for business owners is improved productivity. The healthier your employees are, the better they’ll be at their jobs.
In fact, one study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine found that employees who participated in health and wellness programs each gained an average of 10 hours in additional productivity annually. This boost saved their companies $335 in productivity costs per person per year compared to non-participants.
Indeed, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that productivity losses related to personal and family health problems cost U.S. employers $1,685 per employee per year, or $225.8 billion annually.
Wellness programs that help employees develop healthier lifestyles will ultimately improve their productivity—and your bottom line.
Decreased stress and improved morale
Health and wellness programs not only improve employees’ physical health, but they also improve their mental health. This can be incredibly valuable for small business owners, as employees at small- to medium-sized companies often feel the most stressed out, as they’re typically shouldering more responsibilities than those at bigger firms.
You don’t need any studies to prove that less stressed-out employees are going to be happier and more productive. Happier and healthier employees are naturally going to have improved work performance, and that’s all the more reason to institute simple things to improve their health outcomes.
Simply providing access to healthy snacks and drinks in the workplace can encourage your team to take short breaks and eat food that will boost their energy levels. Or you might offer flexible work schedules and/or work-from-home opportunities—anything to make employees feel more content.
Fewer sick days
Again, it’s a no-brainer that healthier employees are going to take fewer sick days. To achieve this, you should provide resources to help improve employee health behaviors.
The easiest way to get employees to adopt a healthier lifestyle is no big secret—simply give them increased opportunities to eat better and exercise more frequently. Most people want to eat healthier and exercise, but many feel like they just don’t have the time.
Stocking the workplace with healthy snacks is one easy option. But you can also give employees more time for lunch, so they don’t have to rely on fast food, or offer to cater lunch for them, and order the food from a nutritious eatery.
It terms of exercise, you can start weekly workplace-sponsored yoga, aerobic, and/or dance classes. Or offer those who use the gym at lunch or right after work an extended break/ earlier time off, so they can more conveniently fit exercise into their daily routine. This might even cause your more sedentary employees to start a fitness regimen out of jealousy.
Want to attract and retain the best employees? Offer a better benefits than your rivals. Employees who feel like they’re treated better by one employer versus another will nearly always go with the employer who takes care of them—sometimes even if they offer less pay.
Health and wellness programs are a popular way to attract top talent. All of the standout tech and software company’s know the draw of impressive health and wellness programs, as they are fighting to hire the top employees in the world. Microsoft, for example, offers a free wellness program, free gym membership, onsite health clinics, and no health insurance premium.
These extra benefits not only help keep Microsoft’s team healthy, happier, and more productive, but they also encourage them to stay with the company, while attracting new talent. With such an array of incredible benefits, why wouldn’t you launch a health and wellness program?
We can advise you on the most effective ways to improve your employees’ health and wellness. We can also help you navigate any legal, insurance, financial, or tax issues that may come up as a result of the new wellness initiatives. Contact us today to learn more.
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