Are your efforts to increase workers’ well-being as successful as they could be?

rawpixel-771284-unsplash-501632-editedEmployee wellness programs are becoming increasingly popular— 75 percent of employers now offer wellness and health information and/or a general wellness program, according to recent Society for Human Resource Management data.

The initiatives can have an impressive effect. More than half of participants say employee wellness programs have supplied benefits ranging from reduced sick days to helping to detect disease, according to a UnitedHealthcare survey.

Today, companies that offer health and wellness initiatives in the workplace provide a number of valuable employee services — including health risk assessments, flu shots and smoking cessation assistance, according to Peerfit information.

A number of employers may not realize, however, that for their wellness and health program to truly reach its full potential, they may need to incorporate additional components.

Could the following actions help yours yield stronger results?

Targeting specific employee health concerns

If an employee survey reveals a significant percentage of the staff is struggling with a particular issue — such as only being able to sleep less than six hours a night, which National Safety Council data says costs employers roughly six workdays in lost productivity — companies may find it helpful to include health and wellness initiative programming directed toward that condition.

Leveraging technology

Employees may already be comfortable using tech tools to manage their health; three in five do, according to Willis Towers Watson research. More than four in 10 (41 percent) monitor their fitness activity or sleep with wearable devices, and 30 percent track their eating habits with technology.

More companies are turning to wearable devices, in particular, to engage employees in wellness and health efforts. The amount of organizations that incorporated wearables into their employee wellness program increased by 10 percent from 2015 to 2017, according to a Springbuk survey.

Paying workers to participate

Fifty-four percent of workers feel their employer should give them a financial reward for living a healthy lifestyle, according to Willis Towers Watson. A growing number of employees — 46 percent this year, compared to 35 percent in 2011 — say they’d only partake in health and wellness initiatives in the workplace if they were given a financial incentive.

Providing the structure to succeed

Even the best employee wellness program can falter without adequate support. Given that less than half — 47 percent — of workers say their supervisor supports them taking advantage of their company’s health and wellness initiative, a number of organizations need to re-examine their work environment to ensure it’s one that would encourage program participation.

To find out more information about employee health and other benefits, check out our blog posts on 4 ways to save on health care costs, using employee benefits to drive satisfaction and what employees want that you’re not providing.