Employees sitting around a table eating healthy foodA health and wellness program is a unique benefit that’s often not mentioned in the interview process with potential employees. I believe for many job-seekers however, a wellness program speaks to the overall culture of an organization.

For instance, if you offer a wellness program, it can instantly convey the message that an organization values its employees and their overall well-being. More often than not, that company also strongly encourages personal growth and development.

Do you offer a wellness program? Here’s why you should!

The holiday season is right around the corner. Now is the time to begin thinking about implementing health and wellness ideas in the workplace — the start of the new year is when people are often motivated to make improvements in their health and well-being. Although health promotion in the workplace takes some effort to implement on the front end, take note of some of the many benefits of creating your own program:

Greater employee productivity

Promoting healthy habits, such as eating nutritiously, being physically active and managing stress can increase employee productivity and overall workplace performance. People who are healthier tend to miss less work and are more effective when they are on the job.

High employee morale

This goes hand in hand with productivity. If employees produce quality work and are motivated to keep doing it, they’re certainly encouraging those around them. Think about it: Have you ever run into someone who instantly lifted your spirits or mood because of their high energy? It’s the same positive effect that can spread to employees. It becomes contagious and boosts the company’s culture and morale.

Better team building and camaraderie

Think big but start small. Create a fitness challenge in your department. Start a walking club or meet your fellow yogis on the mat during lunch hour. These team-building experiences create fun and allow employees to get to know one another outside of the office.

As more people are influenced by this positive change in their coworkers, encourage them to run a relay marathon together in teams or even hold a hydration challenge in the office. Getting senior leadership to participate demonstrates commitment to the wellness mission, so be sure the c-suite participates when possible.

Improved employee recruitment and retention

Being able to showcase a health and wellness program throughout the recruitment process has an impact. These programs can draw in potential employees. If they learn that your organization is doing all three, you’re most likely going to retain those employees for longer. A happy and healthy employee who feels cared for by his or her organization is more likely to stick around.

Stacey Kendrick, a health educator and worksite health promotion expert, recommends forming a wellness committee when you plan to initiate a health and wellness program.

“Ideally, the committee will include employees of all levels of the organization and will be comprised of people who are interested in and passionate about wellness and healthy living,” Stacey says. “This committee will get buy-in from upper-level management, develop and respond to the needs of the participants and be held accountable for managing the wellness efforts.”

Do you have a health and wellness program in place today? WriterGirl and Associates has a plethora of experience in employee-facing health communications. Let us know how we might be able to support your internal or external content needs.