Monday 25 March 2019
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Commit to Get Fit

There’s been plenty of research touting the praises of workplace health and wellness programs in recent years. In addition to helping reduce health insurance costs, such programs are also reported to lower absenteeism and presenteeism and increase productivity and help attract and retain top talent. Estimates suggest a $2 to $4 return
on investment (ROI) for every dollar spent in workplace health and wellness. Yet, there are still many employers that are unsure if they can make them effective in their workplace. And those concerns are valid.

Experts suggest that merely having a wellness initiative in place offers no guarantee of improving employees’ wellbeing. Although more than 85 percent of large employers offer a wellness program, Gallup research shows that only 60 percent of U.S. employees are aware that their company offers a wellness program — and only 40 percent of those who are aware of the program say they actually participate in it. For companies that provide these programs, it might be time for a checkup.

To ensure that wellness programs achieve their true potential, experts say companies must regularly audit their wellness initiatives to determine whether employees are participating in and benefiting from them. If they aren’t, it’s vital to find out why. An ineffective program can drain financial resources, erode credibility and yield little
to no return on investment.

Yet companies also can improve their chances for better results through education and engagement. One way is to enlist managers to promote well-being initiatives with their teams and in one-on-one conversations with their employees. This can help overcome some of the top barriers to program participation and success: lack of awareness, lack of interest and suspicions about employers’ motivations.

Expert also say when employees are motivated to achieve their goals in a supportive environment, it becomes easier for them to accomplish things that are in their own best interest, such as maintaining good physical health. And the healthier your employees are, the more likely your organizational culture will thrive overall.

In this edition of the Business Magazine, we’ll explore some of the many resources that are contributing to employees’ overall health and improving employers’ bottom line. We’ll talk with representatives from Highmark about the health insurer’s True Performance value-based reimbursement program and how it is lowering costs and rewarding physicians for better care. We’ll also talk with Gerry Vandemerwe of the YMCA of Greater Erie about the Y’s many programs and services that can help you and your team get fit in 2018. In addition, we’ll also highlight some of the current topics that are important to promoting a healthy and safe workplace for all.

From insurance, HR and legal services to professional development training, the Association has numerous offerings that can help you on the road to wellness in 2018. Visit the MBA website at to learn more!