Why Customize Wellness Programs?
The “one size fits all” approach rarely works in our society, and wellness programs are no different. The workforce encompasses a diverse group of employees who are in various stages of life. Recent college graduates, new parents, and seasoned professionals nearing retirement all have unique health and wellness needs that cannot be met with a “one size fits all” wellness program. With customizable wellness programs, employees are better able to choose an insurance plan that works for them, as well as pick and choose the health benefits that are most important to them. Not only does this improve engagement and morale, but it makes your organization more competitive when it comes to attracting and retaining top talent.
Three Steps to Creating a Customizable Wellness Program
1. Check Out The Competition: Ron Goldstein, the president and CEO of CHOICE Administrators, explains that talent competition is only continuing to rise. While pay is still one of the top deciding factors when choosing a job, benefits are rising on the list. When starting the process of offering customizable benefit plans, it is actually a great idea to check out the benefits your competitors offer. This serves as a good starting point for brainstorming and you might see an idea you hadn’t thought of before. Goldstein suggests looking for this information through your local chamber of commerce, or your employee benefits agent.
2. Talk With Your Employees: To understand exactly what your employees are looking for in their benefits plan, ask them about the program elements they like, don’t like, and what they would like see in the future, You can create a survey, talk with employees one-on-one, or conduct a focus group. Either way, employees are going to feel involved in the process and see that their employer truly cares about their needs, which means they are more likely to take advantage of their benefits.
3. Communicate The New Options: Once you have an idea of what your employees want and how to stand out against your competition, it is time to incorporate the new options and communicate them to your employees! Communication is always the most important step when introducing new benefits into the workplace. If your employees are unaware of the changes or are unsure of how the option for individual customization works, then it was all for nothing. Consider holding a seminar or lunch-and-learn event where employees can learn about customization and ask questions. You can also include this information on your online portal, on handouts, in an email, etc. The more information employees are given, the more likely they will utilize their benefits!
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