Industry sources: employers will continue to focus on employee health and wellness initiatives
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Tags: employee health wellness
Two prominent organizations within the human resource and group employee benefits industries, Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and BenefitsPro respectively, site recent studies and trends as indications that employers will continue to offer benefits that promote financial and personal health and wellness for their employees.
During a sluggish economy, the goals of health and wellness initiatives focus on providing employees more options that enable them to control costs and pursue lifestyle choices that promote their personal health and protect their financial goals. Employers recognize that providing employees with the opportunity to improve their health and secure their finances increases morale, confidence and productivity within their workforce.
All increasing trends since 2008, below is a summary of recent employer survey findings:
- 73% – The sluggish economy negatively affected employee benefit offerings.
- 45% – Offer health and lifestyle coaching.
- 35% – Provide rewards or bonuses for completing a health and wellness program.
- 92% – Offer defined contribution retirement-savings plans.
- 21% – Provide defined benefit pension plans.
- 51% – Offer paid time off, traditional vacation time, sick leave and personal days.
- 21% – financially incent healthy lifestyles, tobacco cessation, and health risk assessments.
The studies also found that employers are spending an average of:
- 19% of an employee’s annual salary on voluntary benefits.
- 18% on mandatory benefits.
- 10% on pay for time employees did not work.
As organizations are educated on their impacts on health care costs, both employers and employees are realizing that healthier behaviors and utilization strategies are cost-effective ways to improve employee engagement and promote a healthier workforce. Employers are seeing that a return on investment is possible when their workforce is engaged and educated on workforce initiatives that decrease costs for both the employer and their employees.
DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, and based on particular situations, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice, financial advice and/or the advice of a licensed insurance or certified human resource professional.
© Connelly, Carlisle, Fields & Nichols 2012