Employees are the most prized possession and valued assets for an organization. An effective and dynamic workforce drives the organization towards organizational success and well-being. Firms have realized the crucial role that human capital plays to further the mission and vision of the company. Human capital can be in the form of mental capabilities or labor as well. Both entail employees being healthy, mentally and physically.
Statistical evidence shows that undesired levels of stress, obesity and various factors that pose a potential threat to employee wellness breed unproductivity and ultimately incur unwanted healthcare costs and absenteeism due to health issues. Which is why one way companies seeking to keep their employees engaged and happier is offering vacations, to help them get a break from their hectic schedule.
To formulate goal-oriented strategies, drive business and inculcate innovation and creativity, it is essential that employee health is managed by establishing a culture that is conducive to their growth. For this very purpose, employee wellness programs are formulated, specifically known as ‘Wellness and Productivity Management’. These strategies can help firms of all sizes generate positive statistics regarding employee productivity. WPM is a comprehensive solution that aims to maximize productivity and derive higher profits by effectively managing their workforce. Employee wellness can be assessed using unique health risk assessment (HRA) tools which also impacts their engagement at the workplace.
Let the numbers speak for themselves
- 40% of all workers feel intense work pressure, causing stress-related anxiety and depression according to National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
- Healthcare spending was accounted to be $2.4 trillion or $7900 per capita in 2007 which was 17% of the U.S GDP. An estimate of U.S. healthcare spending reveals that it will escalate to $4.3 trillion in 2017, which will account for 20% of the GDP.
- 45% of the U.S. population, i.e. more than 133 million Americans, have at least one chronic condition
75% of all high-performing companies keep track of the quota of expenditure spent on the employee’s health and wellness and using that data formulates effective risk management strategies. These companies have realized over a span of time that employee wellness is of utmost importance. Fostering an environment conducive to physical activity or constant boosts of energy in any form is one of the ways of managing the health of your employees.
What defines a good wellness program?
The best way to go around solving a dilemma is by precisely identifying the problem statement. So is the case here
- Certain employee engagement surveys are drafted to measure the level of employee engagement and the factors that may be contributing towards employee disengagement. Making the upper-level management aware of the situation under-hand can be the first step toward problem solving.
- Employees at a high risk for depression, anxiety and enervating stress need to be identified, while at the same time keeping their health condition confidential. This builds trust between the employee and the employer as the employees feel they are being cared for and their health problems addressed. The stress could be due to piling debt, which the company can help them get rid of via loan repayment plans. This, in turn, reduces absenteeism and enhances productivity
- Developing the workplace culture in a way that promotes greater physical and mental well-being and backing it by incentives is the way to go. Mental health professionals can be hired and retained who will actively seek to arrange workshops and other team-building activities that will help the employees blend into one unit. This will empower them by eradicating feelings of hesitation, seclusion, and frustration. Not only that, it will undoubtedly boost employee morale and productivity.
Hence, it can be concluded that the best way to increase employee engagement and productivity and curb absenteeism and turnover, is to implement a wellness program. This works as a cost-effective strategy for the welfare of your employee and the company as a whole.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not of The HR Gazette or its team members.