How does your employee wellness program measure up?

“UP 2,3,4 – DOWN 2,3,4”

Employee wellness programs that promote healthy exercise and eating habits can be just as beneficial to the employer as to the employee. If you offer incentives for your employees to get healthier- quitting smoking, losing weight, or reducing stress for example- you benefit from a healthier workforce, with less absenteeism due to illness.

In addition, you may be eligible for reduced health care premiums from your insurance provider. You can also experience a significant ROI on the cost of your wellness programs. A 2011 report issued by the Incentive Research Foundation (IRF) found that corporate wellness programs have shown savings-to-cost ratios of $3 for each dollar invested. It’s a 3:1 ROI that companies can take to the bank. Further, companies that provide employee incentives (including promotional products, company stores or corporate gifts) as part of a wellness program appear to earn the best ROI of all.

With the passage of national health-care reform in 2010, businesses gained a greater incentive to offer employee wellness programs. Most apparently, by 2014, companies will be able to offer rewards of up to 30% of the total cost of an employee’s insurance coverage. For a single person’s policy, the reward increase will average $483 annually, while family policies will earn an employer credit of about $1,300 each year.

Companies will also have access to free government-provided educational wellness tools like Web portals and call centers. The Department of Health and Human Services will be additionally charged with conducting periodic national surveys to measure chronic disease prevention and the effects of promotional wellness programs – a clear benefit to firms with smaller staffs.

The Brand Consultants at The Cooley Group can help you navigate through the myriad of options to help you shape up your employee health and wellness program. Promoting your employee’s good health and healthy habits will bring you long lasting benefits.