5 Tips to Help You Improve Your Workplace Wellness
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Posted by Paige N. on July 21, 2017 in Acuity Focus

 

As a small business owner, you know that health insurance-related costs are a big concern. But while you know healthcare is expensive, you also know that keeping your employees healthy is important to their happiness and your bottom line. As more jobs shift to an office setting, sitting is now being referred to as the new smoking. Therefore, your office building is in a unique position to get employees more active.

 

Across all civilian jobs in 2016, workers spent an average of 61% of their day standing or walking, but for some industries the majority of time is spent sitting. For example, software developers spend 90% of their day sitting; accountants spend 81%; insurance sales people, 80%; and lawyers, 76%. Thankfully, there are a few methods you can implement as an employer to help your employees live the healthiest lives possible.

 

Here are a few ideas to get you started on the path to a happy, healthy work environment:

 

  • Invest in standing desks. According to a 2016 study conducted by Texas A&M University, employees with desks that allowed them to both sit and stand were 46% more productive than those who sat the entire day. With this return on investment, it’s hard to argue that making the change does not pay off.
  • Encourage preventative care. Remind employees to go to their yearly appointments and to get recommended preventative care. One employee contracting the flu can spread it to many others. Check into bringing immunizations on site for employees. This can reduce the amount of sick time employees need to take and keep them feeling well.
  • Create an employee incentive program. Some companies give health insurance discounts to employees and family members who meet certain health milestones, such as a healthy BMI, cholesterol, or blood pressure. This can be a costly investment, but it can have big payoffs. Another option is to contribute to an employee’s health savings account (HSA) for meeting certain health criteria. If you do not have a formalized health plan, offering chances to win gift certificates for massages or gift cards to a local farmers market can be a great way to show your appreciation for the effort it takes to achieve health goals.
  • Create outlets for employees to get healthy. Bring in a Weight Watchers® at Work program or hire a local yoga teacher to offer a weekly after-work class. Look into bringing a massage therapist or nutritionist to come in and speak about their services during employees’ lunch breaks. These programs are not especially expensive, but show your employees that you care about their wellness and want to help them feel their best!
  • Create communication channels to disseminate health information to employees. Utilize a health newsletter in which you share healthy recipes, incorporate health quizzes, and share community-related events. Organize an event to support a cause. For example, you could provide a catered lunch to your employees for Breast Cancer Awareness Month and encourage them to wear pink and make a donation to the Breast Cancer Research Fund. You may find that employees are interested in promoting heath topics that are near and dear to them. Encourage them to bring you ideas.

 

As a small business, you can win big by investing in the health of your employees. It will be easier to attract and retain quality people. You will save money on your health insurance as well as cut back on sick days. Your employees will respect you for taking an active interest in their happiness. While you may not be able to implement every tip shared above, try just a couple and see what happens. You can easily build on successes and modify those things that do not show results. Be creative, ask for input, and remember that you are doing what is best for your employees!

 

Sources

http://www.tennessean.com/story/money/industries/health-care/2017/04/30/unhealthy-workers-cost-nashville-businesses-500m/100972478/

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-05-01/wall-street-wellness-programs-are-now-used-to-drive-sales

https://www.fastcompany.com/40418593/this-is-the-future-of-corporate-wellness-programs

https://simplyworkcomp.com/10-statistics-that-make-the-case-for-workplace-wellness-programs/

http://blog.businessolver.com/3-ideas-to-inspire-your-employee-wellness-strategy#gref

https://www.inc.com/aj-agrawal/6-ways-to-improve-employee-wellness.html

Beckman, Kristin. Active workplaces present trade-off between worker health and safety. Business Insurance. April, 2017.

Paige N.
Paige N. came to Acuity in 2015 as a commercial lines underwriter. Through her time in underwriting, she worked on a wide array of accounts, many in the service industry, including: automobile repair shops, apartments, beauty shops, and everything in between. In addition to her underwriting experience, Paige worked in advertising and is studying to obtain the Associate in General Insurance (AINS) designation. Thanks to her father, Paige drives a manual transmission and finds driving a manual much more fun than an automatic!


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