How are you investing in your employees? Do you focus solely on monetary compensation and material benefits like group health insurance? Have you considered adding hands-on employee wellness benefits, like yoga classes, but thought they weren’t cost-effective? Or have you already tried offering physical wellness activities for employees but got a lackluster response?
At Discovery Health Services, bespoke corporate wellness is our passion. We have a deep understanding of why physical health is important on the job and at home — and our 20-plus years of experience make us the perfect partner for developing and implementing effective physical wellness activities for employees, whether yours is a small office, a large manufacturing company or a huge corporation.
Let’s start by looking at why physical health is important at work, then we’ll dive into the benefits of investing in employees’ physical well-being for both your bottom line and your staff. Then we’ll give you four great ideas for developing employee wellness activities that fit your workers, your budget and your company’s long-term goals for success.
Why Invest in Employee Wellness?
It’s a fact that seems self-evident: Physically healthy workers can do more — and do it better and faster — than those struggling with illness or disease. And regulatory agencies like OSHA enforce requirements for basic physical health in the workplace, like the availability of air ventilation systems and personal protection equipment.
But investing in your employees beyond those baselines shows that you value them as human beings and want to help them achieve their very best. Plus, you’re demonstrating that you understand why physical health is important for a good life outside of work, which can inspire a level of trust and loyalty that money cannot buy.
The benefits of investing in employees’ physical well-being are multifaceted for both you and the people working for you. Robust and accessible employee wellness programs can deliver:
Lower healthcare costs
Studies have shown an average overall ROI of $1.50 for every dollar invested in employee wellness. That savings often came in the form of reduced medical claims for workers who changed eating or exercising habits after participating in employee wellness programs.
Higher morale and productivity
Rather than focusing on how to prevent workplace burnout, investing in employees with flexible insurance options, excellent lighting and appropriate employee wellness activities can boost morale and job engagement. Workers in good health typically exhibit a happier mood on the job, making them more likely to go the extra customer service mile and interact more meaningfully with their colleagues.
Lower turnover rates
Every employer knows it’s more expensive to find and train a new employee than to keep an existing employee. And retention is one of the most impressive employee wellness program ROI indicators. When your company prioritizes physical wellness activities for employees, your bottom line grows with the money saved from avoiding hiring costs, and your brand gets a boost from your physically healthier and more loyal staff.
Higher odds of attracting new talent
Looking to fill out your roster of skilled and talented workers? Be prepared to demonstrate all the ways you’re investing in your employees. The recent pandemic shifted the job-search advantage from companies to individuals, and most applicants now demand assurances for both mental and physical health in the workplace. If you’re not actively investing in employee wellness, you may miss out on the best and brightest.
Ways to Improve Physical Health in the Workplace
Now that you’re clear on the overwhelming benefits of investing in employee health, you can start thinking about an employee wellness program that fits your staff. Gone are the days of one-size-fits-all workout challenges and strict no-snacking policies. Here to stay is the idea that physical health in the workplace is a complex goal that requires a multifaceted approach to be accessible to every member of your team.
Implement Tailored Employee Wellness Activities
Creating a structured and accountable wellness program means making sure it is:
Relevant to all the age groups and ethnicities in your employ. Gen-Xers may still be interested in smoking-cessation programs, but younger workers might respond better to meditation or yoga classes, for example.
Considerate of all body types and health needs. Take into consideration physical wellness activities for employees in wheelchairs or those who are brand-new to vigorous exercise. The more accessible the program, the more buy-in you’ll get across your company.
Authentic — as in genuinely designed to improve overall physical health in the workplace for the long run. A one-day walking marathon might raise money for a special cause, but a program aimed at transforming unhealthy habits into more healthful routines shows that you’re investing in employees for the foreseeable future.
Here are four ways of investing in your employees’ physical well-being that are sustainable, accessible and cost-effective:
Offer Vaccination Clinics
A visible and tangible way of investing in your employees’ physical health is to bring health care to your place of business. The recent rise in corporate clinics shows how the convenience of getting a health screening or diagnostic appointment without scheduling time off or traveling can both reduce downtime and increase job satisfaction. Whether it’s a permanent onsite clinic or a short-term health fair, this strategy demonstrates how much you value physical health in the workplace.
Include Families in Employee Wellness Programs
It bears repeating that employees want to feel valued as full human beings, not just prized as cogs that keep the machinery of business going. That’s why including families in employee wellness activities can level up the success of any employee wellness program. Whether that means extending gym memberships to spouses and children, inviting family members to corporate events or encouraging family-friendly fun like weekly game nights, this kind of involvement is key to successful employee wellness programs.
Support Holistic Physical Health in the Workplace
Losing weight is not the only way to achieve physical health — but limiting your employee wellness programs to weight loss goals is a sure way to alienate a percentage of your staff. Instead, think beyond the scale to develop employee wellness activities and strategies everyone can get onboard with. For example, offering vitamin B12 shots can support physical health in the workplace without the controversy of vaccinations. And there’s no better long-term strategy for investing in employees than by improving negative work environments. Ridding your business of bullying, mandatory overtime and unrealistic quotas creates a sense of trust and accountability that is indispensable for overall employee wellness.
Employee Wellness Programs From Discovery Health
When it comes to investing in your employees’ physical health, you’re not on your own. Discovery Health is ready to jump in and help you design employee wellness activities and programs that are measurable, impactful and affordable. Contact us today to make physical health in the workplace your brand.