5 Signs Your Company Needs an Employee Wellness Program

Posted by Joe McErlane on Jun 18, 2018 10:00:00 AM

As a best practice, implement an employee wellness program before you ever notice it's missing. However, if you're balancing priorities with time and budget like most employers and haven't gotten around to a wellness program yet, these telling signs might help you move an employee wellness program to the top of the list. 

#1 Employee Health Isn’t What it Used To Be

The first sign its time to establish an employee wellness program is that employee health has taken a nosedive. Some telltale signs of trouble include: 

  • increased use of sick days; more illness spreading through the office
  • more employees requiring medical leave for conditions like heart attack and stroke
  • potlucks and employee fridges are overflowing with foods that are high in fat and sugar, while fruits and vegetables are hard to come by
  • overflowing cigarette receptacles at the employee entrance

 workplace health, employee wellness


Overflowing cigarette receptacles at the employee entrance = telltale sign your company could benefit from a Wellness Program. #employeewellness #workplacewellness [Click to Tweet!]

#2 Your Corporate Healthcare Costs Are Out of Control

If your insurance premiums increase by 20-25% or more each year, it's likely an indication that your employees are incurring astronomical healthcare costs; specifically, more than your insurer estimated. Estimations are based on age and claims history, so exceeding those estimates means your employees could be - or even should be - healthier.

Statistics show that 90% of healthcare costs incurred are the result of illnesses that can be prevented. An employee wellness program can help you get those costs back down through prevention and early detection. 

#3 Productivity is Tanking

If you're doing the same things you've always done, but productivity continues to decline, you might be experiencing a problem with employee wellness. A myriad of diseases and conditions - like obesity, arthritis, depression, and more - can impact a worker's ability to do their best work.

Studies show that exercise improves productivity by improving mood and mental health and reducing the likelihood of illness. Creating an employee wellness program that promotes physical fitness, then, is a great step toward improved productivity.


tanking productivity, workplace wellness


#4 Recruitment and Retention Is Getting Harder

As your attrition grows, your costs grow. As a matter of fact, when an employee resigns, you lose 6-9 months of their salary when you add up costs of the lost employee with the cost of recruitment and onboarding of a new hire. This means it can cost as much as $30,000 to replace an employee earning $40,000 per year.

A wellness program can improve both recruitment and retention. It improves recruitment by providing an added benefit that shows you offer a forward-moving, employee-centered workplace. Likewise, it can contribute to improved retention by demonstrating the company's care and concern for each employee's whole experience, both as an employee and as a unique human being.

#5 Morale Isn’t What it Use to Be

We like to look at it this way: each employee has a choice to be happy or miserable every single day, despite what you provide as an employer. But we also know that their experience with you is largely dependent on a couple of things: 1) the state of their own mental health and well-being because it's hard to choose happy when illness chooses for you, and 2) whether they feel valued and appreciated.

A wellness program can provide avenues for mental wellness, like exercise and access to counseling and mental health services, as well as send a loud and clear message that each employee is valued and appreciated.

To conclude, these key takeaways can help you make your pitch and get your program started: 

  • 90% of healthcare costs are incurred due to illnesses that could have been prevented
  • employees who are well - both physically and mentally - give you the highest return on investment
  • an employee wellness program can make it easier to recruit new hires and hang onto them longer, and 
  • wellness and morale go hand in hand


Employee wellness programs aren't the only way your company can get on a healthier path, read about the major benefits of onsite health clinics and what it can do for your company.


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