Today’s article is from Small Biz Advisor.
Employees want a boss who cares about their health.
A new U.S. survey of approximately 1,300 businesses and 10,000 employees found a strong link between the wellness and vitality of an organization and the health and wellness of its employees.
The survey, conducted by Virgin HealthMiles Inc. found employees place a premium on the culture of wellness with 87% claiming that health and wellness programs play a role in determining their employer of choice. However, quantifying the bottom-line impact of these programs continues to be a challenge for employers.
Of the 1,300 businesses surveyed, 80% offer health and wellness benefits. Among that group, 47% have extended those health and wellness benefits to spouses of employees.
“Creating a culture-first mentality is a critical step for employers when it comes to building a highly engaged workforce,” said Chris Boyce, CEO of Virgin HealthMiles. “The trends outlined within this survey mirror what we’re seeing in the market: employees become much more motivated and productive when they know that their employer cares about their total quality of life, which goes beyond traditional wellness and includes physical, emotional, financial and social health.”
Key Survey Findings
- Health and wellness programs are important to employees: approximately 87% of employees surveyed said they consider health and wellness offerings when choosing an employer and 80% of employees surveyed say that they believe their employer cares about their well being.
- Health and wellness programs have a positive impact on an organization’s culture: 70% of employees say that wellness programs positively influence the culture at work. Survey respondents shared that their health and wellness habits are not just motivated by colleagues (58%) but also spouses/partners (53%), friends (41%) and children (32%).
- Incentives matter: incentives also play a big role in the motivation of employees to participate in wellness programs, with 61% of employees saying it is a key reason they participate and 78% claiming they are interested in participating in incentive-based programs while at work. The commonly-offered positive programs by employers today are: physical activity programs (58%), smoking cessation (50%) weight management (49%) and health risk assessments (47%). However, the programs that employees are most interested in varied a bit from what most employers are offering.
- Communication is a concern: only 51% of employees surveyed said they have a good understanding of how to participate in health and wellness programs being offered by their employers. With 82% of organizations relying primarily on email as the main source of communication for these programs, there is a trend of companies moving to a more direct communication model of manager to employee, with 26% of organizations reporting they are now using this method.
- Measuring impact continues to be a challenge: while employees are confident in reporting how health and wellness programs have benefited them, employers still struggle with finding a tangible way to directly correlate these programs to bottom-line benefits – yet 67% are exploring the possible connections.
To download a free summary of the extensive survey finding click here.