Do Corporate Wellness Programs Actually Save Money?
Many people have had the experience of working for a company that promotes wellness. They might encourage fitness challenges, gym memberships and physical activities throughout the year. While these activities and opportunities promote health and wellness inside of a company, they can also eat up a lot of company money.
The reasoning behind these programs is that they can help create healthier employees and a better work environment. The programs could also save money on healthcare benefits in the long run.
But the question is, does this actually save the company money?
Today we’re going to take a deep dive into how much corporate wellness programs cost. Do they save the company money? If so, how long will it take to get there?
Upfront Costs to the Company
Corporate Wellness Programs became increasingly popular after the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed in 2009. As a part of the ACA, it offered companies incentives to start programs to help prevent serious diseases and health-related problems within their company.
Just by looking at one health-related issue, we can see the damaging effect bad health could have on a company. In 2018, the American Institute of Stress estimated that work-related stress was costing businesses $300 billion a year.
Hence, the emergence of corporate wellness programs.
In 2014, RAND Corp. estimated that companies were spending an average of $6 billion on employee wellness programs. That number is now estimated to have risen to $8 billion.
Benefits of a Corporate Wellness Program
Better health can do more than earn the company money through the ACA. A focus on health could also improve employee’s performances within the company. It has been proven that the healthier the body of an employee, the better they will perform.
Another important aspect of wellness programs is that they show corporations actually care about their employees. A work environment in which employees feel wanted and valued can increase productivity as well.
In general, corporate wellness programs encourage employees to practice healthier habits. They eat better, work out more, and relieve stress in productive ways. That last perk may even be underrated, possibly impacting the $300 billion spent on work-related stress each year.
What’s the Verdict?
Eventually, corporate wellness programs reduce stress amongst employees and promote healthy lifestyles. In the end, this will end up helping the company to save money. Keep in mind, these savings aren’t immediate and may take a while to add up and be beneficial.
Some effects of employee wellness programs will be seen right away. Other benefits could take up to five years to actually result in savings.
A study conducted by Harvard showed that after three years of an employee wellness program, Return on Investment (ROI) for the company averaged out to $3.27. This means that for every dollar a company spent on a wellness program, they made another $3.27.
Do you have any more questions about employee health? Passport Health can help! Schedule an appointment with your local Passport Health clinic by calling or fill out a contact form and speak to a representative.
Written for Passport Health by Kaitlyn Luckow. Kaitlyn is a freelance writer, photographer and English teacher in Milwaukee. She has a passion for capturing and writing other people’s stories. You can find her at her website.