How to Incentivize Vaccines in the Workplace: Divided Workplace
The process of receiving vaccines in a workplace wellness clinic is not new. Many people get annual flu shots right inside their company conference rooms each fall. It’s one benefit that’s simple for employers to coordinate, and there’s great value in keeping employees healthy. This flu season, there’s another vaccine that’s dividing workplace opinion: the COVID-19 vaccine.
While mandates are increasing the COVID-19 vaccination rate in some companies, not everyone views them as a way to keep employees and customers safe. This is a highly controversial and polarizing issue that if not handled gently, can diminish corporate profits, sow distrust among employees and threaten the future of your business.
Discovery Health Services (DHS) has vaccinated more than one million people in on-site corporate wellness clinics. Let us show you how to avoid this scenario and appeal to people with viewpoints on both ends of the vaccine spectrum.
The Divide of Vaccinations in the Workplace
While there are several benefits of workplace vaccination – including reduced sick time and improved productivity, among others – requiring certain vaccines may cause distrust or resentment by employees. The emotionally charged debate over the COVID-19 vaccine continues to drive a wedge between coworkers and put people at odds with their supervisors.
As a business leader, you need to be able to see this issue from both sides. While you may be vaccinated, that might not be the case with everyone who works for you. We’ve seen firsthand how pushing for or against the COVID-19 vaccine puts business owners at odds with up to 50% or more of their workforce.
What would happen to your business if this many people left tomorrow? Or, if customers with these same opinions stopped patronizing your establishment? We recognize the benefits of a 100% vaccination rate, but we also can’t ignore the disadvantages of forcing that upon an entire team of employees with diverse backgrounds and beliefs.
Listen more to find out why some of your employees might take issue with the vaccine. You don’t have to agree with them, but as a business owner, you should absolutely be making efforts to understand their point of view. When they see how you’ve made an effort to listen, they may be more receptive to new company policies for the unvaccinated (i.e. regular testing, masking, etc.).
Offering Vaccines in the Workplace
As part of your corporate wellness program, on-site vaccine clinics offer a convenient way for employees to get the vaccines they want. When you partner with DHS, you may choose to offer employees a wide variety of vaccines, including:
- B-12 and B-Complex injections (for employees who prefer not to get a flu shot)
- Hepatitis A and B
- T-Dap (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis)
- MMR (measles, mumps, rubella)
- And more
Encouraging employees to get flu shots (at a minimum), especially at the beginning of flu season, will keep the workplace healthy and productive. If your organization can’t offer a clinic on site, encourage employees to get their flu shot elsewhere within the community. Additional incentives like PTO to get their flu shot may help, too. Taking this kind of action shows you’re encouraging and supporting year-round employee wellness, but not enforcing it.
Offering Vaccine Alternatives
The divisiveness surrounding specific vaccines can make workplace clinics feel exclusionary. They involve highly personal decisions that impact your health, and some even consider them controversial. For these reasons, DHS recommends offering alternatives to the flu shot that promote a more inclusive event.
One way to promote inclusivity is to provide immune-system-boosting vitamin B-12 plus vitamin C injections for employees who prefer more natural options over the seasonal flu shot. Having options reduces the controversial nature of the clinic, and employees feel more respected for their personal decision to decline the flu shot.
Encouraging employees to get flu shots and other vaccines takes a little effort, but there are smart and simple ways to do it. Here’s how to increase vaccination rates at your upcoming DHS clinic.
Spread the Word on All Clinic Offerings
Promoting your on-site vaccine clinic is an excellent way to reinforce the fact that your company is invested in employee wellness. Organizations that make it easier for employees to take care of themselves (by having to walk down the hall for a shot rather than driving across town), enjoy increased productivity and employee morale. So, spread the word!
In short, be thorough without an excessive amount of pressure. Distribute informational flyers, hang up posters, send office-wide emails, and use wellness tools/apps, etc. to convey the importance of vaccines, particularly seasonal flu shots. Be clear about what shots are available to them at the clinic(s) and make it easy for your team members to sign up for appointments.
Open Offers to Family
Some of our clients increase participation in workplace shot clinics by inviting employee family members to also get vaccinated. It’s a smart way to show that the company respects not only the employee’s wellbeing, but that of their entire family. It’s a powerful statement.
A popular and simple way to motivate employees to attend a vaccine clinic involves rewards. Think about the incentives your team may respond to, and build them into your promotional plan. For example, you might offer lunch or snacks; launch a raffle or other contents for high-value prizes; or award an extra day of PTO to all who participate. The possibilities are endless, but making attendance optional (and incentivizing it) can help reduce the stress or pressure employees might feel about vaccines.
Get More Information About On-Site Vaccination Clinics from Discovery Health Services
Discovery Health Services is the wellness partner that can help you successfully foster and maintain a healthy workforce. After seeing firsthand and learning from thousands of clients we’ve served around the country, we can tend to that garden with you. It’s rich with opportunities to improve the overall health of your workforce, and to the emotional and mental wellbeing of those that a company’s success is dependent upon.
To get more information about our on-site vaccination clinics – with options and alternatives for your entire employee audience – visit our website today.