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Company Wellness Plans Proving Valuable for Employers

123Print Company Wellness EmployeeEvery company wants more productive employees and a key component to achieving this goal is great health. When employees are in good shape, they tend to be happier and perform better. Healthy employees can also bring fewer costs to the employer by lower absenteeism and less health care expenses.

One way companies are supporting the health of their employees is through incentives in wellness programs. These range from supplying health and fitness information, to funded nutritional lunches, and even reimbursements for gym memberships. Workers everywhere are losing weight, lowering their blood pressure and cholesterol, sleeping better, managing stress more effectively, and saving money.

A recent survey conducted by the human resource consultancy department of Aon Hewitt concluded that 83 percent of employers offer incentives in wellness programs. Most offer rewards as incentives (79 percent), a small amount (5 percent) offer penalties, and 16 percent offer both.

Jim Winkler, chief innovation officer for health and benefits at Aon Hewitt, said in an explanation of the results, “Motivating people to participate through the use of incentives is a best practice in the industry and these strategies will continue to be a critical part of employers’ health care strategies in the future.”

Of those companies offering wellness options, more than half required employees to comply with medications and actively participate in health programs or activities such as health coaching. About two-thirds of employers running wellness programs offer monetary incentives at the value of $50 to $500, and one-fifth offer more than $500.

The survey results from Aon Hewitt not only showed the benefits for the employees, but employers noted seeing a positive result from offering incentives. More than 50 percent of employers said they saw better health behaviors and an increase in engagement from employees after instituting a wellness plan. Almost half said morale and satisfaction within the company seemed to improve as well.

123Print Company WellnessThe benefits of company wellness plans are not going unnoticed. According to Aon Hewitt, 58 percent of companies surveyed plan to enforce consequences on employees who do not take action to improve health within the next few years. Another 34 percent said they might offer incentives for employees to complete a progressive program where they increase minutes of activity in each quarter. For any employees who meet certain criteria, 20 percent of employers surveyed said they were interested in offering rewards.

Companies are quickly coming to the conclusion that better health and wellness means better business, and employers and employees alike are seeing the benefits.

Bio: Incentive Logic, a technology and services based company providing web-based incentive programs like Employee Recognition and Rewards, Health and Wellness, Market Research, and Customer Loyalty Programs Fortune 1000 employers, and other enterprises.

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