Wellness Among the Top Health Benefits on the Rise

As healthcare costs continue to climb, employers are looking at a variety of strategies to reduce their overall costs. According to the “2017 Inventory of Total Rewards Programs & Practices” report from global consulting firm Korn Ferry and global HR association WorldatWork, there are 22 benefits that have increased in popularity year after year, and continue to be on the rise in 2018.  Of the 22 benefits, almost half (45% or 10) are wellness and well-being related. Although many of the services/benefits may be offered through employee assistance programs (EAPs), it has been suggested that there is increased participation if services are provided on-site. The wellness-related benefits include:

Behavioral health plans

  • Last year, 91% of employers surveyed offered programs to help employees cope with concerns of depression, substance abuse, anxiety, stress and/or disrupted sleep.

Programs to promote wellness and well-being

  • 87% of employers offered seminars, webinars or literature to promote wellness and well-being.

Biometric and wellness screenings

  • 77% of employers offered these last year. They are becoming more popular than ever. Thought to be most cost-efficient when done on-site.

Participatory wellness programs

  • 75% of employers polled offered these participatory wellness programs. A participatory wellness program is, by definition, open to any employee who wishes to participate. Rewards are not based on results, just the fact that an employee participates.

Health coaching

  • 72% of employers offered this benefit. It is considered one of the easiest services to help employees make health changes.

Wellness incentives

  • 66% of employers offered wellness incentives last year, despite increased regulations.

Stress-reduction programs

  • 65% of surveyed employers offered these last year. With constant changes in the workplace, employees continue to struggle with work-life balance. Employers who pay attention to this need for balance, offer such things as yoga and massages on-site.

Nutrition counseling

  • 65% of surveyed employers offered this benefit last year, and it continues to grow in popularity. Often provided as part of health-care plans.

Wellness gamification

  • To engage millennials, 45% of employers used contests, lotteries, points, quizzes, leaderboards or avatars to create meaningful health changes in employees.

Outcomes-based wellness programs

  • 43% of employers provided these types of programs. They reward employees not merely for participating, but for achieving a specific health goal. Examples of this type of program would reward those employees who lower their cholesterol or weight through a targeted program.

Other benefits that many employers offer include on-site health fairs, online wellness screenings, immunization clinics (especially during flu season), and general health advocacy programs.

Drop us a note at libraryworklife@ala.org to let us know which benefits you provide and which are most-used by your employees. You can also visit the APA Wellness site.

Special Note: You won’t often see librarian or library worker noted on lists of stress-filled occupations. However, as much as we love working in a library, we know the job is not without stress. In the De-Stressing Your Job (& Life) session, we’ll review some of the causes of stress and provide simple, yet effective ways to help reduce stress on the job (and in your personal life). Gain real-life examples and practical suggestions to stress solutions. Session will be held during the ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans on Saturday, June 23rd, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. in the ALA JobLIST Placement & Career Development Center located in Exhibit Hall J.