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6 reasons you need a corporate well-being programme

By Damien Walsh - November 02, 2020

Over the course of my 20-year career, I've seen the transition from curative to preventative care.

This has emphasised the need for better workplace well-being.

I’ve witnessed first-hand the positive change to my clients’ businesses and the lives of their employees.

Corporate well-being is now more important than ever.

And 2020 has certainly accelerated this.

Are you going to pivot or perish?

Workplace well-being is revolutionary – not just for your employees but for your bottom line.

In fact, 92% of executives say reducing healthcare costs is a top motivator when designing well-being initiatives.

Here are 6 reasons why it’s time for your organisation to embrace the change.

1. It helps form healthy habits that stick

When done well, such programmes give your employees the strategies, incentives, tools and support to adopt and maintain healthy behaviours.

These lead to lower health risks and fewer chronic diseases.

This doesn’t just benefit your workforce.

For you as an organisation, it means lower overall health care costs, fewer days lost to sickness and a much healthier, happier environment to work in.

2. It leads to a healthier and happier workforce

As covered in the UAE medical insurance report, there’s a worsening state of health in the region.

Obesity and diabetes are on the rise in the UAE, and are almost entirely caused by unhealthy diets and lack of physical activity.

Sadly, poor eating and not enough exercise are commonplace.

Well-being programmes are a fantastic way to provide your employees and their families with knowledge about what they can do to take care of themselves, while making it enjoyable.

I recently heard that one of our client’s employees discovered they had diabetes and was able to manage this before it was too late, all thanks to an on-site health checkup they ran.

3. It improves your bottom line

More often than not, the savings are far greater than the actual costs.

This is great news for your business’s bottom line.

Having said that, the ability to reduce healthcare costs depends on your commitment to well-being.

An occasional seminar on nutrition or ad-hoc health checks won’t do enough.

It needs to form part of a wider solution.

4. It keeps employees focussed on the job

Presenteeism is essentially when employees are present at work despite poor health.

They’re concerned about being absent.

So, they go to work and, as a result of their poor physical or mental health, are unable to be productive.

It’s estimated the costs associated with this are at least 2 to 3 times greater than direct healthcare expenses.

You can change that through driving better support.

35% of employees want help with their mental health.

It also decreases absenteeism due to lifestyle-related illnesses.

I know organisations with comprehensive schemes have fewer absences.

Employees with disciplined behaviours, controlled stress, healthy blood pressure and cholesterol, and who are not overweight are all less likely to be off work unwell.

They’re also significantly less likely to be absent if their morale is high and they’re engaged at work.

Harvard researchers found that for every dollar spent on well-being, employers can save $2.73 on reduced absenteeism.

5. It helps to recruit and retain top talent

When you implement well-being, you’re showing that you care about employees.

They know when they’re appreciated.

They’ll feel welcome and valued as an important part of your organisation.

87% of employees said they consider health and wellness offerings when choosing an employer.

That knowledge can go a long way toward convincing employees to grow their career with you, and attracts interest from new joiners.

They could go elsewhere, but will they get treated and valued the same way?

6. It builds and nurtures morale

After employees start to engage, communicate with each other, feel valued and appreciated, the reasons for well-being change.

I find clients pursue more initiatives because of the positive change it has had on their culture over any other reason.

It totally transforms what it’s like as a place to work.

Employees are now healthier, but more importantly, they’re relishing being there.

Wellness is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
– The World Health Organization

I’ve certainly seen how 2020 has exposed the gap between human and cost-centric approaches.

I hope you’ll use this year as a catalyst for re-evaluating your organisational priorities.

If not, ask yourself, are you going to be left behind?

Realistically, your employees aren’t concerned with your healthcare cost problems.

They care about their own happiness and well-being in an enjoyable environment.

I’m extremely passionate about making a difference to people’s lives and I encourage you to use that as your motivation, and the benefits will follow.

Find out more about how to look after your employees and reduce costs in our UAE medical insurance report, or get in touch with me anytime.

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