Research shows that supporting well-being has countless benefits that don’t stop at employee engagement and productivity—they extend all the way to company earnings too.
By Zee Johnson
Employee wellness has been at the forefront of workplace conversations for some time now and has quickly become a critical part of talent acquisition, retention, productivity, and culture. But is investing in well-being really a must-have for all organizations? The answer is simple—absolutely.
Gympass’ new Return on Well-being report that surveyed global HR leaders found that investments into wellness have become non-negotiable and have had a direct, positive impact on company performance.
Here are some of the key findings from the report.
- 90% of companies that invest in wellness programs see a positive return.
- 85% said wellness programs decreased the cost of talent recruitment, retention, and/or engagement.
- 85% of respondents cited decreased utilization of sick days as a result of comprehensive well-being benefits.
- 78% reported their wellness program saved them money on healthcare expenses.
To ensure the program will be leveraged, leaders are relying on employee feedback to lead them in the right direction, and workers are being particular about what they want. “This shift in employee expectations is indicative of a changing workforce, where the importance of wellness benefits is influencing attitudes at work,” says Lívia de Bastos Martini, chief people officer of Gympass. “What we’re seeing is that employees crave holistic well-being benefits – not just gym memberships, but also mental health resources, meditation guides, nutrition help, sleep support, financial literacy programs, and more.”
Bastos Martini says that these resources have proven to increase employee engagement, satisfaction, and productivity at work, making them critical and impactful for employers and employees alike.
And organizations with dispersed workforces are taking heed to what their employees want as well and are tailoring benefits to meet the needs of everyone, everywhere. “With workforces dispersed around the world or commuting between their house and the office, the inclusion of digital well-being resources has become a key piece of the puzzle that allows us to reach employees everywhere, no matter their physical location,” she says.
Bastos Martini knows firsthand what it’s like to cater to both on-site and remote workers. “At the start of the pandemic, amid lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, Gympass pivoted quickly to offer digital classes and well-being apps that allowed employees to prioritize their physical health, meditation, sleep, and nutrition at home. To meet this demand, we’ve added partners to the platform such as Thrive Global, Headspace, and MyFitnessPal,” she says.
Collecting feedback from the workplace is the first step of program creation, but what comes next? With a suggestion box toppled by demands, how do leaders go about choosing which components are utilized or which will be most beneficial? “There is no one-size-fits-all approach to well-being, and no two employees are exactly the same, which means no program will look the same across the board,” Bastos Martini says. “A standout wellness program should include a full suite of tools that span the spectrum of employee well-being, including mind, body, and life. This includes physical fitness, as well as mental, physical, and nutritional health.”
While there’s no one way to do a wellness program, there are strategies that help understand what is working. Bastos says one way of determining this is by simple math. “To calculate the ROI of wellness programs, we developed a straightforward formula. By calculating the sum of productivity increases, talent management savings, and healthcare savings, then subtracting the costs of wellness programs, your company can quantify the true value of wellness programs,” she says.
She also encourages HR leaders to leverage data to showcase the benefits of employee well-being not just on people, but on the bottom line as well.
Simply put, investing in employee well-being is concurrently investing into company performance. Organizations that ensure their employees feel supported and have proper, comprehensive benefits and resources to prioritize their well-being will have happier, more engaged, and productive workforces.