Employee wellness has become a priority, especially since the pandemic. Until a few years ago, employee wellness programs mainly implied offering workplace benefits and perks, including health insurance, 401(K) plans, etc. The key idea behind offering workplace benefits and perks was to attract skilled talent and reduce employee turnover rates.
However, for the past few years, employees are prioritizing employee health and wellness. Employers are looking for various employee engagement strategies that keep the workforce engaged at work, happy, healthy, and productive. Employee wellness programs are one of the major trends incorporated by employers to promote employee health and wellness.
Ideally, corporate wellness programs are employer-sponsored programs that are designed to support employee wellbeing by cultivating healthy habits. The sustained behaviors improve the overall quality of life, reduce health risks, and boost workplace wellness, from the bottom line.
Well-designed corporate wellness programs offer many benefits. Right from reduced healthcare costs to improved employee engagement and productivity, workplace wellness programs can boost the business in many ways.
However, there is a lot of ambiguity about the costs associated with workplace wellness programs. Here is a quick insight into the various costs that go into implementing an employee wellness program for your workplace.
Costs of Corporate Wellness Programs
Normally, the costs associated with implementing an employee wellness program for your workplace depends on 2 factors –
- What you want to offer to your employees
- How much are you ready to spend on the wellbeing program
Many survey reports revealed that employee wellness programs usually cost around $150 to $2,000 per employee, annually. Studies also show that workplace wellbeing programs that offer a corporate wellness platform are an economical option.
Along with a wellness program platform, there are many other modules whose costs must be counted while calculating the overall expenses of the wellbeing program. Here are a few of them.
Employee Wellbeing Program Modules
Robust employee wellbeing programs offer a wide array of resources and features. Most programs include health risk assessments, biometric screenings, and other assessment tools as their onboarding activities. These assessments and screenings are important to give an insight into the current health status of the employees and the potential health risks, which help in planning and offering the best-fitting wellness resources. Many companies outsource the assessments and screenings from screening partners or vendors. While it may not cost as high as the other expenses, they still add to the costs associated with the wellness program. The other modules may include wellness challenges and health coaching programs, which usually cost around $140-$165 for 5 – 6 sessions.
Corporate Wellness Platforms
Corporate wellness platforms, equipped with the latest wellness technology provide various educational materials and modules that allow the company to implement, run, and manage the employee wellness programs. Ideally, a corporate wellness program that is accompanied by a corporate wellness platform costs organizations a monthly cost of $3 to $10 per employee. Most of the costs come from the modern benefits of the employee wellbeing program. Such comprehensive employee wellness programs with access to a wellness program platform also include a mobile corporate wellness app, and modules like incentive management, device integration, health assessments, and more.
For the corporate wellness program to deliver the best-suited features and modules, it is essential to have an expert on the wellness committee team. In short, the wellness committee members must have expert knowledge about employee health and wellness, wellness technology, administration, and must have strong workplace relationships with the entire workforce. When companies are not able to manage the wellness program modules by themselves, they usually outsource the responsibilities.
Wellness vendors are employee wellbeing program experts who manage the wellness program modules for your company. Right from deciding the best-suited wellness modules and features, to designing the workflow and implementation, the wellness vendors usually do it all. Since many wellness program tasks are carried out and managed by them, the cost of hiring a wellness vendor is usually more expensive than purchasing a wellness program platform. Survey reports show that the monthly costs to hire a wellness vendor may range from $30 to $150 per employee per month, or even more depending on the company size and wellbeing program responsibilities.
Rewards and Incentives
A Cigna study of employees participating in almost 28 employer-sponsored wellness programs showed that offering the right incentives reduced overall healthcare costs by 10% and the medical costs of chronic health diseases were lowered by 13%. A RAND study revealed that apart from improving employee holistic wellness, offering incentives enhanced employee engagement, and participation in the employee wellness programs increased by 20%. According to a report by the Washington Business Group on Health, some companies are spending around $742 per employee annually on rewards and incentives. Depending on employee interests and company budget, the incentives can include eGift cards, reimbursements, premium discounts, HSA contributions, and other employee benefits.
While spending all these wellness dollars on employee wellness initiatives may seem quite expensive, the benefits gained from implementing a well-planned wellbeing program are worth every penny. A United Healthcare survey revealed that the lowest ROI incurred by companies was $1 for every dollar spent on the employee wellness programs, while many others reported an ROI of $4 for every dollar invested.
Here is a sample budget to calculate the cost of your employee wellness program –
Number of employees – 300
Wellness platform costs per employee annually – $40
The cost of the wellness platform for all the employees = 300 x $40 = $12,000
Other features and modules like health coaching, incentives, and set-up fees may be added to this amount, depending on the corporate wellness program provider.
At FreeWellnessPlatform.com, we believe that health and wellness must be available to everyone, and so, we offer free and affordable employee wellness programs with a robust wellness program platform equipped with the latest technology to ensure companies give the best to their employees.
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