Most companies offer employee benefits. The usual offerings include health insurance, paid time off, and retirement savings. However, more and more companies are seeing the benefit of providing a wider range of benefits to their employees, specifically wellness services. Often times, these additional wellness benefits are contingent upon budgeting and overall company values. Companies offering wellness benefits have happier and healthier employees and usually experience other positive effects, which benefit the bottom line.
Employee Benefits of Wellness in the Workplace
Benefits are first and foremost, used to recruit and retain employee superstars. But these programs also are imperative to helping employees facilitate work-life balance. The United States Chamber of Commerce reports employees with well-designed and executed wellness programs having a higher level of life satisfaction. They feel supported in maintaining or improving their physical, emotional, and mental health.
Companies Benefit, Too!
More than 87 percent of companies are committed to wellness in the workplace, and it’s not hard to understand why. It gives companies a warm, fuzzy feeling, plus wellness benefits help reduce costs and drive production. For instance, unhealthy behaviors lead to health risk increases, which in turn leads to chronic illness. When employees have higher instances of chronic illness, insurance premiums go up, absenteeism increases, and output suffers. A Harvard study found that for every dollar spent on wellness, medical costs fall by $3.27 and absenteeism costs fall by $2.73. Wellness programs literally pay for themselves and then some.
The mental effects of workplace wellness also cannot be ignored. According to a survey performed by the American Psychological Association, 91 percent of employees with superiors who are committed to their well being via wellness program are motivated to perform their best and have higher job satisfaction. This attitude is contagious and contributes to overall team morale.
How Merchandise Warehouse Approaches Wellness
Smoking especially affects the warehouse population with a reported 30.2 percent of employees in the industry using some sort of tobacco product regularly. Merchandise Warehouse is playing a big part in helping its employees kick this unhealthy, expensive habit. For the past six years, Merchandise Warehouse has taken a strong position in helping employees quit smoking, even if that takes a little “tough love.” Two years ago, they made the entire campus smoke-free. Unlike regular breaks, smoke breaks require employees to punch out. Since this affects an employee’s paycheck, it’s been a big motivator. Merchandise Warehouse is also a part of the Raise It For Health campaign, which is an initiative to reduce smoking in Indiana.
Merchandise Warehouse does a lot to help employees improve their health. We offer 100% covered smoking cessation plans as well as addiction therapists for employees needing extra help. We employ a full-time Wellness Coordinator to help employees with all things wellness. In line with our company’s Christian values, we partner with a chaplain to help employees with life issues and guidance. In the end, our wellness program helps us deliver on our mission to provide a family environment where employees can find acceptance, opportunity, and purpose.