How to Get Remote Workers Involved in Wellness Programs
The Work-from-Home and Freelance workforce is only increasing around the world.
Currently, there are approximately 3.9 million people who work in this capacity. Some businesses may still need you to go into the office periodically, but this trend is only becoming more popular. Many workers have now made telecommuting their way of life. In fact, it’s projected that up to a third of the workforce will work remotely in the next 10 years.
Employers are reaping the rewards of initiating wellness programs for their employees. Many corporations have different incentives for taking a meeting outside and walking. They host different contests, like who went to the gym regularly and even feature healthy bake-offs or luncheons.
What if you are an organization that has employees in the office, as well as those who work remotely? How can you make your telecommuters and freelancers feel like they are part of your company and include them in your wellness program?
Below are some tips to keep in mind:
Listen to Your Remote Workers
Ask for their input about ways they can take part in the wellness program.
To do this, you might consider emailing a questionnaire or have a brainstorming meeting via video calls or group messaging with various department managers.
Employers already know that communication is key with remote employees. When looking for input on these programs, it’s not different. Ask for help to determine what activities are essential to them and when they can include them into their schedule. Then, use this as your foundation and start from here.
Studies suggest that employee driven wellness programs are more successful and rewarding than those that originate from corporate headquarters.
Send calendar notifications to your telecommuters or have the reminder be on their screensaver.
You may even want your IT Department to rotate wellness tips whenever the screen times out remotely. These will provide great reminders to your freelancers to stay focused, alert, and healthy while working.
Provide a Human Touch
Telecommuting is excellent because it allows people to have flexibility in their schedules. Personal or familial obligations become much less of an issue when working remotely.
But, there is also a downside to it. Many freelancers miss out on the daily interaction and personal contact with others.
This is why you should provide access to a health coach who reaches out to all your employees. Individual consultations is a huge perk that can help with physical and mental health. Not only will this encourage your workers to get on board with the wellness program, but it will help track their progress as well. Some coaches may also include periodic webinars and meditation sessions.
Designate Working Hours
Working from home means that they have 24-hour access to messages, emails, and voicemails. While that may be perfect for a hardworking employee, it can also prove overwhelming and stressful. Your employees who work in the office are not bombarded like this.
It’s vital that your employees who work from home know that you expect them to follow the same work hours as everyone else. This means you don’t expect them to answer an email, phone call, or text message after business hours or in the middle of the night.
When remote workers understand this, it helps reduce their stress levels. They have better peace of mind knowing that their work hours are the same as everyone else’s; unless stated otherwise, of course.
Hiring remote workers will only become more popular. While it may some inconvenient at times, the practice offers many benefits for your business.
As their employer though, it should be your priority to help them feel like they are part of the corporation and are valuable. All these tips mentioned above will help them feel just that when it comes down to your wellness program.
Do you have any other questions about improving health and wellness within the office? Passport Health can help! Schedule an appointment with a local clinic by calling or fill out a contact form.
Written for Passport Health by Sabrina Cortes. Sabrina is a freelance writer with a Bachelor’s Degree from Georgian Court University. She currently lives in the Smokey Mountains of western North Carolina.