As of 2018, U.S. unemployment is at a 50-year low, labor shortages are expected to continue into the ‘20s, and jobs are currently growing faster than the labor pool can fill them. If you’re an employer trying to win and retain top talent, how do you stand out from the crowd?
Onsite Clinics Are Key to Engagement
We’ll cut to the chase: an onsite clinic boosts your overall benefits investments and your employees’ attachment to their place of work. A 2015/2016 survey from Willis Towers Watson showed that employees are more likely to say they’ll stay with their employers when they have an onsite clinic, and they report more sustainable engagement, to boot. Offering an onsite alternative to long wait times and expensive copays can be just the ticket to welcoming your newest and brightest or poaching that high-level executive from a competitor.
Don’t take our word for it: nearly half of employees agreed that their health care plan is an important reason why they will stay with their current employer, and the percentage of self-reported highly engaged employees went from 39% without a clinic to 51% with a clinic.
In an economy that’s seeing rising medical claims, dwindling physician access, and an aging workforce, more and more applicants are considering the health benefits offered by a potential employer. And for many, a workplace that emphasizes total wellness with onsite medical care and services is a priority.
The Importance of Retaining Talent
Retaining talent is always a concern, but consider the facts: At the end of the Great Recession in June 2009, there were 7 job seekers for every 1 job opening. As of this year, the ratio is nearly 1 to 1.
Factor in the reality that birth rates have slowed, migration has lessened, and people in the U.S. are less willing today to move for a better job, and you have a crisis of talent retention that may see you with a depleted workforce. The qualified candidates looking for a career with your company are also looking at what you’re able to offer them in a benefits package. An onsite clinic and wellness program serve as the kicker to your interview pitch.
You might be in a growing industry. If so, know that there are already significant gaps in the skills required to fill jobs. When you get an applicant that fits the bill, know that today’s marketplace is high in opportunity and low in qualified talent.
What does this all mean? The labor crisis equals more competition to attract new talent, which requires an investment in keeping your current talent engaged and productive. This is precisely where an onsite clinic and wellness program thrives.
Creating a Community
The numerous benefits of an onsite clinic don’t end at the point of talent acquisition. It creates a community and a foundation of wellness that’s sure to turn your employees into loyal company partners.
Carly Deer, NAWHC Board Chair and Senior Benefits Leader at Target Corporation, says, “Employers are becoming more directly involved in shaping the health care market and improving their employees’ health. Properly structured onsite medical facilities can create a foundation of primary care and associated services that can assist moving care upstream, which can help improve outcomes, manage cost and increase productivity.”
When it comes to offering wellness benefits and services, an onsite clinic serves as the hub for all programs and offerings: a centralized meeting place, a source of expert medical practice, and a repository of wellness expertise and training.
Consider the employees in need of programs like weight management, tobacco cessation, and financial wellness. If joining these programs means time off work, lost pay, and long commutes across town, it’s more likely for an employee to forego these crucial wellness solutions. That leaves you with a suboptimal workforce that’s not bringing their A-game due to health and stress.
The fact is that employees want to be members of a wellness-minded community. It’s your opportunity as the employer to provide that reality with a host of wellness programs.
Wellness Programs + Onsite Clinic = Success
You might wonder what kind of services you can offer without an onsite clinic. The short answer: a lot, but they may not be doing much.
This question is a vital one because wellness programs on their own, with no infrastructural support or medical capabilities, are on an uphill battle to pay dividends. This is often why you’ll see reports claiming that the cost savings behind wellness programs are exaggerated.
This is unfortunately the case for many programs that don’t preempt the correct infrastructure to drive onsite clinic traffic. In reality, an employee-centered wellness program without the backbone of an onsite medical clinic is working at half-power.
To reach top speed in both financial saving and population health improvement, an onsite clinic and its respective wellness services must work together to save money on medical claims, improve primary care access and health outcomes, and boost employee productivity.
There are a variety of wellness programs that easily pair with an onsite clinic model, and they can be personalized to fit individual needs. Whether it’s for tobacco cessation, mental health, weight management, or stress management, specific health issues can be targeted to be improve your population’s overall health. And what’s more: these improvements in health increase employee engagement, promote productivity, and reduce absenteeism among employees as part of a community-wide solution.
It’s a win-win saving money on high health premiums while fostering a focus on wellness that will transform company morale.
The Onsite Clinic Trend
Apple and Amazon are just a few companies embracing onsite clinics as a way of retaining talent, offering quality and value-based care, and lowering overall health claims.
In fact, nearly a third of U.S. employers offer worksite clinics, according to a Mercer and National Association of Worksite Health Centers (NAWHC) survey. This is up from 24% in 2012.
Whether it’s to better manage health costs, reduce health risks, or increase overall productivity, onsite clinics and wellness programs are a growing solution to a growing problem in today’s marketplace of employment.
David Keyt, a group leader at Mercer in worksite clinics consulting, says:
“More and more employers are finding measurable value in providing high-quality healthcare and patient experience via worksite clinics. Given the high rates of employee satisfaction and utilization, I think we will continue to see growth in offerings of clinic and expansion of the health services that clinics provide.” (Employee Benefit News)
And in a report cited by Employee Benefit News, employers with onsite clinics reported high percentages for employee satisfaction—83%--and utilization rate--78%.
Compounding Savings, Improving Morale
In saving money on out-of-control health claims and unhealthy employees, you’re becoming more competitive within the marketplace in terms of financial strength and talent acquisition.
But what’s more: you’re creating a community of wellness that reaches far beyond the physical space of the clinic. Through wellness programs, community outreach, and personalized health coaching, every member of your employee team will reap the benefits of a health-centric community.
One Healthstat patient explains,
"My time is very valuable to me. We’re out in the boonies at work, and I already have a 40-minute commute. So for me, the convenience of the clinic is really important. It’s high quality in terms of the care and the professionalism – not really any different from going to the doctor, except that it’s just one easy package, where going to the doctor would take a lot of time and be really out of the way."
In Case You’re Not Convinced
In 2017, 40% of Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” had onsite clinics at their headquarters. Nine of them offered clinics at multiple locations. When you’re able to offer premium healthcare at little to no cost, you attract the right kind of attention from high-level talent. This is doubly true when living in areas that have high health costs or scarce healthcare availability. And, you can offer up healthcare services to employee dependents and spouses, ensuring that your top candidates are taken care of when it comes time to make an employment decision.
Consider creating a culture of wellness at your workplace. Implementing an onsite clinic and wellness program lowers your medical claims costs, improves company morale, and gives you a bargaining chip to win and retain career-long difference makers. If you’re interested in reading more about the benefits of an onsite clinic program, see how Healthstat inspires healthy change.