In recent years, corporate wellness programs have become more common for companies large and small. While the corporate wellness concept isn’t new, it has been on the rise over the past several years as the advantages gain more recognition.
The corporate wellness model was first introduced in 1979, when Johnson & Johnson launched their Live for Life program, with the sole intent of making their employees “the healthiest in the world.” The program involved giving employees easy access to health screening programs, health education and various other forms of support, in an effort to reduce absenteeism and medical expenses.
According to Harvard Business School, Johnson & Johnson, along with other businesses providing such programs, have experienced significant savings in health care and benefited from higher employee productivity. Based on reports from the U.S. Department of Labor, more than 80% of companies now invest in wellness.
The Benefits of Investing in Employee Wellness
Research continuously reveals there is a connection between companies promoting and supporting healthy lifestyles and how it directly affects employee performance and attitude. When properly structured and promoted, it is a win-win situation.
Here are three ways that wellness programs make a positive impact in the corporate environment:
#1 Team Building: Companies routinely experience high turnover or low employee productivity when there is a lack of camaraderie and supportive relationships in the workplace. Moreover, a survey published by CareerBuilder revealed that gossip caused a decrease in productivity and a report by Mental Health America indicated that workers opted to work alone due to an unpleasant, non-supportive work environment. However, by incorporating team-building exercises that address social wellness, relationships among co-workers and management are nurtured, thus improving the workplace environment.
#2 Inspires Loyalty: In addition to strengthening relationships, employees want to work for companies that will appreciate and respect them. Having access to wellness programs, whether in the form of on-site gyms, recreational programs, or medical benefits inspire loyalty. Benefits like these are perceived by employees as a show of value and respect to them and, as such, they will reciprocate with their dedication and motivation.
#3 Boosts Morale: There is no one size fits all program, so businesses should carefully consider their options. When companies incorporate a wellness model, it should fit within their culture. Whether it is a blend of on-site and off-site programs, or hosting special enrichment events and offering incentives, it should be an extension of the values of the company. By doing this, everyone in the company will gain more benefits and embrace the opportunities.
Additionally, having a program that supports the company’s mission motivates employees and promotes efficacy. With a clear goal and straightforward approach, each part of the wellness program will work seamlessly together. So, whether management is onboarding new employees or encouraging existing staff members to participate, the workplace environment will offer a community atmosphere and boost morale.
The bottom line, more and more companies are investing in wellness programs due to financial, health, and productivity rewards.
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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.