4 Essential Elements to Growing an Effective Wellness Program

By: Megan Landean, M. Ed.

As employers and employees face the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, creative solutions to combat stress and social isolation have risen to the forefront. With such unprecedented circumstances, proactive companies are discovering it is more important than ever to make sure your team and workplace are equipped to keep your employees happy and healthy.

What is Workplace Wellness?

Harvard Business defines workplace wellness as an “organized, employer-sponsored program that is designed to support employees (and, sometimes, their families) as they adopt and sustain behaviors that reduce health risks, improve quality of life, enhance personal effectiveness, and benefit the organization’s bottom line.”

Workplace Wellness by the Numbers

Sure, this sounds like a good idea, but does it really work?

According to the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, employers who implemented wellness saw an average annual savings per employee of $565 (in 2009 dollars). Another study found that employees who participated in a health promotion program improved their health care or lifestyle and saved their companies an average of $353 per person per year in productivity costs compared to non-participants.

Not only does some form of wellness program save the employer money, but it also makes your company somewhere people want to be. 89% of employees at companies that support well-being initiatives are more likely to recommend their company as a good place to work (Forbes).

What can YOU do as an employer to promote wellness in the workplace?

  • Promote work/life balance. With most of us continuing to work from home, it is difficult to know when is work time and when is life/relaxing time. Encourage your employees to set boundaries between work and personal time.
  • Variety is key. Wellness means different things for everyone and having a wide variety of wellness initiatives is important to keep everyone engaged and interested.
  • Lead by example. New and improved wellness initiatives are a great idea, but participation is improved when leadership buys in. It’s important that your company leaders and HR team are practicing what you preach and encouraging others to follow their lead.
  • Listen. Feedback is important but making sure your employees feel heard is critical to establishing a culture of wellness. Take the time to periodically check in with your team and hear their ideas.

What is the difference between OFFERING wellness programs and BUILDING a culture of wellness?

Most companies in today’s corporate environment have some type of wellness program or initiative, but often it is an ancillary piece of the puzzle that gets forgotten or neglected. Making programs available is a great start, but so is leading a horse to water. Health is something that many of us take for granted until it is gone and finding ways to get people engaged and excited about wellness is where we come in.

At Trilogy, we recognize that your people are your most important asset. We empower you to care for your people’s well-being - mind and body – to improve their day to day life. We believe an effective wellness program begins with providing content that is relevant to your population, progresses with programs, engages your employees, and culminates with personalized touch points that can benefit employees on an individual level. Combining these three elements, content engagement and personalization, results in the most impactful wellness program possible.