8 guidelines for implementing a Corporate Wellness Program:
1. Establishing a Wellness Committee
Employee involvement is vital to the success of any wellness program. As a result it only makes sense to involve employees in the planning process. Therefore, a wellness committee should be formed that will be responsible for carrying out or overseeing the steps in the planning process.
2. Wellness Program: Assess Employee Needs and Interests (aka survey)
What good is a wellness program if no one participates? Not much –it is important to make sure to assess employee needs and interests with respect to worksite wellness programs. Businesses of all sizes will want to send out a small survey to address the following questions:
- Are managers willing to participate and encourage others to do so?
- What do they see as the benefits for employees and the organization?
- What kinds of worksite wellness activities are they willing to allow?
- What is the level of employee interest in various types of wellness program activities, the most convenient times and places to schedule activities, and/or suggested organizational changes to promote a more healthful work environment?
- Discover how employees want to receive program information and how (e.g. electronically, strategically-placed bulletin boards, memos, etc.).
- What health components (nutrition, physical activity, tobacco) are they most interested in addressing and how?
- What types of groups might employees be most inclined to join (e.g. walking, yoga, cooking, biking, weight-loss, dance, martial arts, nutrition, etc.)?It is important to think about what you hope to accomplish and who will do what, when and how, regardless of the size of the business. A wellness program mission statement, like an organizational mission statement, briefly lists the goals or accomplishments that the project will strive to achieve. Ideally, objectives should be clear, time-limited and stated in such a way that it is easy to determine whether or not they have been achieved.
3. Designing a Wellness Program
It is important to think about what you hope to accomplish and who will do what, when and how, regardless of the size of the business. A wellness program mission statement, like an organizational mission statement, briefly lists the goals or accomplishments that the project will strive to achieve. Ideally, objectives should be clear, time-limited and stated in such a way that it is easy to determine whether or not they have been achieved.
Examples of wellness program goals include:
- Reduce the number of employees who smoke from 30 percent to 25 percent by the end of the next fiscal year.
- Reduce the overall use of sick leave by at least two percent from the previous year, after the first full year of program operation.
4. Develop a Wellness Program Timeline and Wellness Budget
Typically, an internal staff person – with input from the wellness committee and management – develops the wellness program budget. An accurate and comprehensive wellness budget will allow the wellness committee to better compare program costs and outcomes during the program evaluation. The total wellness program budget could also be translated into a per employee cost or (eventually) a per participant cost.
5. Select Wellness Program Incentives
Wellness program incentives attempt to build motivation by offering individuals external rewards for taking steps in the right direction. Wellness program incentives range from recognition in the employee wellness newsletter to a small monetary bonus. They can also include contributions to a “health care savings account,” merchandise awards (e.g., cups, t-shirts, etc.), extra time off from work or travel awards. A common wellness program incentive for important behavior changes is discounted health insurance premiums. Don’t underestimate the power of wellness incentives to motivate people to change.
6. Market the Wellness Program
It is very important market the wellness program to make people aware that the wellness program exists and to motivate them to take advantage of it. The planning process itself can be a powerful marketing tool, selection of a creative name or theme for the wellness program often excites interest. E-mail, bulletin board and/or newsletter announcements are also free or inexpensive. Perhaps the best marketing tools of all, however, are pleased wellness program participants who advertise for you by word-of-mouth.
7. Wellness program implementation:
Implementation involves putting the plan into action. It may require making arrangements with wellness vendors, recruiting health and wellness speakers, negotiating with health plans or health clubs, scheduling wellness activities and more.
8. Wellness Program Evaluation
Periodically review wellness programs to determine their efficiency and effectiveness. A good wellness program evaluation looks at information to learn both how well the program is working and whether or not it is achieving expected results. Occasional modifications based on these results can ensure that a program is following a course that leads to success. Effective wellness programs that are committed to high quality wellness program evaluation will be able to easily show the return-on-investment for the initiative and this type of data will be essential to maintaining, if not growing wellness budget.
Interested in implementing a Corporate Wellness Program and don’t know where to start? No sweat, we can help! Whether you are a small company utilizing our private workout facility (staffed with personal trainers) or a company that requires on-site fitness facility management we have a program that will work for you. Some additional services include, but not limited to:
- Health Fair (know your numbers)
- Walk/Run programs
- On-site fitness center audit
For a free evaluation contact us at:
678-417-0880 ext 8301 / firstname.lastname@example.org
2365 Satellite Blvd., Duluth, GA 30096
“Gwinnett Chamber – 15 year member”