The percentage of companies with wellness programs is expected to continue to increase as more organizations realize they need wellness initiatives to stay current and competitive with health trends.
With these programs on the rise, the pressure to be creative and innovative with employee wellness initiatives is also heating up. Watch for these worksite wellness trends we can expect to see implemented in 2017.
Total Health Wellness
It’s becoming increasingly evident to companies that wellness is more than just physical health. In 2017, worksite wellness has started to see a shift in initiatives and goals to support a full spectrum of wellness, including mental, emotional, and physical elements.
While mental and emotional health wellness can be more difficult for employers to assess compared to physical health, it’s just as essential to cover in employee wellness initiatives. Programs like after-work meditation and task management classes can reduce stress, calm the body and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression.
The privilege to work from home can be seen as a competitive benefit for many full-time employees who are searching for more work-life balance.
This can support wellness in a multitude of ways including reduced absenteeism, reduced stress and even increased productivity, which cyclically alleviates additional stress.
With the option to work from any location, any time (traveling, snow, or sick days), employees will not have to use all their PTO days and can remain on task for projects. This is especially helpful for parents who might endure stress about having to take off work when their children are sick.
Flexible schedules are also ideal for any employee who is raising a family. Allowing a tailored schedule, employees can pick how they would like to distribute their 8 hours of work per day. This might mean coming in an hour late, and staying an hour late or coming in early and leaving early.
This system reduces stress and builds trust and autonomy in the workplace. In a recent study by the University of Michigan, employees that were given flexible schedules had increased well-being and healthful behavior. They were able to get more sleep, take care of any health issues, and feel more energized throughout the workday.
Surprisingly, even though flexibility is the top employee benefit globally, only a third of companies offer it.
Unlimited PTO most likely sounds scary to most organizations; however, giving employees unlimited PTO can be advantageous for a company.It has been shown to come with more productive and loyal employees, often not using as many days as standard PTO plans. This mentality of having unlimited time off can boost employee wellness through relieving overworked employees and giving them more time to focus on their health and wellness.
Fitness Classes/Gym Memberships
Lastly, arming staff with gym memberships is trending in this year’s benefit packages. Not only does this make it easier for your employees to find time to exercise to improve their health and well-being, it can also have significant financial benefits for your business, such as increased productivity.
Constant work stress and frustration can lower productivity, but a gym membership will give employees a convenient means of blowing off steam. Employees will appreciate the ability to use their free time productively.
These types of programs are spreading nationwide to various kinds and sizes of employers and other health plan providers. Implement them into your plans for 2017 and the benefits to employers and workers will follow.
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