Most employers are struggling to boost employee engagement for their corporate wellness program. It’s easy to start a wellness program, it’s a challenge to say the least to make it successful.
When employee wellness programs work, everyone involved benefits, you’re likely to see higher productivity, higher morale, stronger retention. Successful wellness programs can see the costs associated with health benefits reduced as well. Employee engagement is a big key to making everything work, unfortunately, that’s where most employers struggle.
It can be a challenge to get employee participation rates high in a wellness program. Starting a corporate wellness program is the easy part, getting employees involved is the challenge many of you face right now and we want to help you change that around.
If your employees don’t appreciate your corporate wellness program or they don’t fully understand it, they’re not going to benefit from your offerings. While it may feel like there’s no way out,
(1) Boost Employee Engagement By Giving Your Employees A Voice
Want to know the quickest way to learn what your employees want? Ask them! Don’t beat around the bush, you need to know what your employees want and need from your employee wellness program.
Truth be told, you’re going to get a lot of great answers; but add your own thoughts too.
- On-Site Fitness
- Free Gym Membership
- Day Off With Pay
- Half-Day Off With Pay
- Smoking Cessation
- Weight Loss
- Healthy Snacks
- Wellness Challenges
- Walk To Work Day
Make sure you keep an open mind to your employee’s ideas, you may see patterns begin to exist and these could be a great idea to implement into your own program.
(2) Communication Is Key
Every successful wellness program has great “communication.” They have multiple channels to reach out to employees and the community. Employers should be promoting all of their programs, not just at work but throughout the community.
- City Hall / Town Hall
- Local Businesses
- Social Media
You want to make sure you’re always encouraging employees to get involved. Make sure you’re telling employees about the benefits of your employee wellness program.
As for your message, it needs to be consistently focused around “health.” Your message is another component that will play a key role in the success of your program. From top to bottom, management needs to be consistent with their messages to employees. It should be a message filled with encouragement and motivation.
You also want to articulate the “value” of your wellness program. How can you do that? For starters, ask current employees in your wellness program if they’re willing to speak on behalf of the program. For employees that have benefited from the program, ask them if they’d be willing to create a video to share with other employees.
Social proof and validation can go a long way to building channels that will attract new employees to your corporate wellness program.
(3) Get Healthy During Work – Commit To Your Goals
If you just put in 8, 10, 12 full hours of work, it’s likely that you don’t feel like putting in 30 minutes of exercise. Furthermore, many of your employees have life to attend after work. Everyone is busy and if others are not participating in your wellness program, it won’t succeed. What can be done?
According to Live Science, 30 minutes of exercise can be just as effective as 60 minutes of exercise as it pertains to losing weight. 30 minutes a day can add up in the long run and employees can see great success.
One of the best ways to get employees involved is by taking them away from work and offer them 30 minutes of paid time if they would join you. Every employer can account for 30 minutes a week, your employees will love this and you should too.
Now, you want to get creative with this 30 minutes, not just a “lecture” or “exercise.” You want it to be fun, educational and motivational. Encourage your staff to participate and join. If you have a lot of employees, you may have to break into smaller groups throughout the week.
Most employees are going to attend since they’re getting paid for it. It’s going to give you a chance to educate your employees, get feedback, get ideas, the sky’s the limit here.
These 30 minute periods could be once a week, twice a week, every day of the week. If you’re going to be trying to turn your wellness program around or implementing a new program, this idea here is a great place to start.
Healthy habits are another important element that we want to start building at work. There’s many ways you can do this;
- Healthy Snacks For Lunch / Breakfast
- 10 Minutes Stretching To Start The Day
- 10 Minutes Walk Around Every 4 Hours
- Having A Veggie/Fruit Day Only
- Everyone Starts The Day With Breakfast
(4) Get Challenges Involved
Employee wellness challenges are a great way to get your employees involved and many of them can be fun, exciting, stress reducing, etc.
There’s a ton of great challenge ideas out there, you can get some inspiration from here: Wellness Challenge Ideas
- Most Steps Walked Challenge
- Workout Challenge
- Sports Challenge
- Stop Smoking Challenge
- Biking Challenge
- Weight Loss Challenge
There’s nothing wrong with some healthy competition and it’s a great way to get employees talking about the wellness program.
(5) Bringing In The Local Community
If you have the opportunity to bring in someone that’s an expert in health, wellness, fitness, mental health, chronic conditions, we recommend you do just that.
You have to educate your employees, it’s up to you because you can’t expect them to know everything about living a healthier life.
You’ll have the opportunity to bring fitness to work, perhaps there’s a fitness expert that will travel to your location to do a 30 minute workout with your program members.
You could invite local meal planners and allow them to speak to employees interested in joining your wellness program.
Think outside the box and don’t be afraid to get creative. If you need help with inspiration, go back to step 2 above. Get your employees involved and ask them for ideas, ask them what they would recommend.
(6) Tell Your Success Stories
Thanks to social media and the internet, we have a lot of channels to leverage to get our stories out to the community. Sharing success stories is a great way to boost employee engagement in your program.
You should be creating video content and online content of your wellness program in action. You do want to make sure employees are comfortable with that idea, most will be but some may not want to be on video.
Think of a special hashtag everyone can use when sharing your employee wellness program. This will help you spread the message but it also gives other employees a good idea of what your program is like.
Reward employees that are creating content for your program, there’s many ways you can say “thanks” to them.
- Leave A Hour Early
- Get A Hour Of Pay For Free
- Half Day Off With Pay
- $30 Gift Certificate To Your Choice
You also want to share success stories, this will allow you to show how your wellness program can help others.
Make sure your website has a page dedicated to your employee wellness program also.
(7) Get Serious And Take It To The Next Level
If you’re serious about making your corporate wellness program successful, you need to surround yourself with experts that can help you do just that.
Here at Kadalyst, we’ve spent years helping company owners like you build successful employee wellness programs.
Our experts have years of experience building participation in wellness programs and we have a proven process that works to get results. If you can boost employee engagement and participation, you can build a powerful wellness program that’s going to benefit everyone.
If you’re struggling to get your employees involved, reach out and schedule a free consult. You can reach us at 503-512-5175 or you can use our contact form here.