The Centers for Disease Foundation sites that each employee costs employers roughly $1,685 due to illness and injuries, which adds up to $225.8 billion annually. In addition, Milken Institute estimates that unaddressed employee chronic disease costs employers $1 trillion each year. Luckily, wellness programs are continuing to grow and are working towards reducing those numbers. Entrepreneur cites that corporate wellness programs are currently an $8 billion industry in the United States and the segment is expected to grow over 7% in the next 3 years.
Why Wellness Programs Work
Wellness programs are effective because they are designed to target and change behaviors that can lead to chronic illnesses. Wellness programs also educate employees on behavior change, encourage healthy lifestyles, and make healthy choices easy throughout the workplace. An added bonus is when employers incorporate health coaches who work with employees to set and achieve their goals. When employees are able to change their behaviors, their health, happiness, and productivity all improve. As a result, it is estimated that every dollar invested in a wellness program generates $7 in savings for employers.
The Top 5 Benefits of Wellness Programs
As listed on Entrepreneur, these are the top 5 benefits of wellness programs:
- Improved employee health behaviors
- Reduced risk of elevated health risks
- Reduced healthcare costs
- Improved productivity
- Decreased absenteeism
The Future of Wellness Programs
In the past few years, there has been a dramatic shift in the way we view health and fitness. This is especially true among millennials and Generation Z. Wellness programs continue to gain popularity because of their ability to improve employee health without interfering with their workday or family time. As the upcoming generations begin joining the workforce, these types of programs will be viewed less as a perk and more of a requirement before accepting a new position.
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