Wellness Programs are Long-Term Investments with Proven ROI

by: Nichole Gunn December 16, 2010

Studies have demonstrated the cost-effectiveness of employee wellness programs. Along with creating a healthier workplace environment, productivity is increased due to reduced employee illnesses.

Having wellness programs in place also reduces healthcare costs and generates a sense that the company appreciates and respects its employees. The latter affect goes a long way in ensuring employee retention.

Unfortunately, with the economy lagging behind, a number of businesses find themselves having to tighten their belts. Often, business owners, not fully aware of the benefits wellness programs and other incentive programs generate, elect to reduce or eliminate these programs.

One study in particular from the University of Michigan focused on a Midwestern utility company. The results showed that the company, while spending $7.3 million on its wellness program, saved $12.1 million over a nine year period. The saving are a result of the company’s reduced healthcare expenses, enhanced employee productivity, and reduced workers’ compensation premiums.

Employers need to look at the long-term rather than short-term when picking and choosing which strategies to use to help reduce the bottom line. The benefits of comprehensive wellness programs are documented and should be carefully considered a long-term investment with proven ROI.