Many employers not delivering proper health, wellness programs: Survey

Also facing budget restrictions

Many employers aren’t delivering the right health and wellness programs, or communicating them to employees effectively, according to a survey by GoodLife Fitness.

Organizations also face corporate wellness budget restrictions and lack systems to measure the success of the programs, found the survey of 200 Canadian senior leaders and HR managers and more than 1,000 working Canadians.

“The more you invest in a workplace health and wellness program, the more you get out of it,” said Tammy Brazier, director of corporate and business development at GoodLife Fitness. “We found health and wellness benefits are on management’s priority list, but many employers are missing the mark when it comes to customizing, communicating and measuring the programs they offer.”

Survey highlights:

•Six out of 10 employers (62 per cent) said their health and wellness programs are not tailored to staff needs but 61 per cent of working people said they would be more inclined to participate in a health and wellness program if it was tailored to their individual needs.

•83 per cent of those responsible for health and wellness benefits felt the programs they offer are sufficient, but 62 per cent of working Canadians surveyed say they would like to see more health and wellness benefits from their employer.

•More than two thirds (68 per cent) of employers feel they do an effective job communicating the details of available health and wellness benefits to employees, yet 62 per cent of employees said they’re not fully aware of the benefits available to them.

• Lack of budget is a barrier for 53 per cent of employers surveyed, and 41 per cent cited lack of time as a barrier to starting a health and wellness program.

•77 per cent of those responsible for employee benefits agree measuring the impact of their health and wellness program is important, yet 59 per cent have no measurement framework in place or find measuring success a major challenge.

•52 per cent of employers are relying on participation and satisfaction rates as their sole measurement, while only 13 per cent track health metrics and 12 per cent track staff productivity.

Best practices for implementing successful corporate wellness programs from Canadian organizations including Canadian Tire, University Health Network, John Brooks Company and CARPROOF are included in GoodLife’s report Breaking Through Barriers: Delivering Health & Wellness Against the Odds.

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