Guide to an Effective Wellness Program

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Has your organization ever considered offering a workplace wellness program for your employees? Workplace wellness programs not only help reduce health plan costs, sick leave and workers’ compensation costs; they also can have a significant impact on an organization’s bottom line.

According to a 2010 Harvard research study, researchers evaluated 36 workplace wellness programs and calculated employers saved $6 for every $1 spent: $3.27 saved in medical costs and an additional $2.73 gained due to reduced absenteeism. Furthermore, studies have shown employee health can have a direct impact on workers’ safety.

Free Resource: Making the Case for Wellness in the Workplace

Below are six steps an organization can take to implement an effective wellness program.

1. Gain Support of Senior Management

While you may clearly see the benefits of implementing a wellness program, it is important to gain support from your organization’s top leaders so they fully understand the benefits and help promote the program.

Free Resource: Sample Memo to Management Proposing Wellness Program

2. Form a Wellness Committee

  • Form a new wellness committee or add wellness initiatives to your current safety committee
  • Recruit committee members from a variety of organization levels and functional areas who have an interest in employee health and wellness
  • Create a mission statement to gain focus for the program (example: “The mission of our wellness program is to inspire employees to adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle at work and home, by establishing a wellness program that educates, motivates, and empowers.”)
  • Agree to meet on a regular basis to build and evaluate the wellness program

3. Gather Information & Feedback Relating to Wellness

  • Review absenteeism rates
  • Review health insurance and workers’ compensation trends
    for your organization
  • Send a Wellness Needs & Interests survey to employees

Free Resource: Wellness Needs & Interests Sample Survey

4. Set Goals and Objectives

Set goals and objectives for the wellness program based on the information and feedback you gathered as well as your knowledge of any existing organizational needs.

5. Promote the Wellness Program to Employees

Even with the support of top leaders in your organization, getting buy-in from employees requires an effective plan and a good dose of creativity. Keep your promotional messages positive and short but to emphasize why wellness is important to your organization. As your wellness program grows, be sure to share success stories with your employees.

6. Track and Measure Success

Tracking the results of your efforts will help you identify ways to improve the program and reward those who have achieved the most success. One way to measure the effectiveness of a wellness program is to look at the information you gathered in Step Three and send a follow-up survey to see how well the program met employees’ needs and interests.

Free Resource: Wellness Needs & Interests Sample Follow-Up Survey



KEMI does not assume liability for the content of information contained herein. Safety and health remain your responsibility. This information is to be used for informational purposes only and not intended to be exhaustive or a substitute for proper training, supervision or manufacturers’ instructions/recommendations. KEMI, by publication of this information, does not assume liability for damage or injury arising from reliance upon it. Compliance with this information is not a guarantee or warranty that you will be in conformity with any laws or regulations nor does it ensure the absolute safety of any person, place or object, including, but not limited to, you, your occupation, employees, customers or place of business.

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