With so much evidence verifying the impact of employee health and wellness on workplace culture and productivity, employers are looking to implement the right employee wellness programs. Studies have shown that a well-designed wellness program can influence various workplace issues like turnover rates, employee engagement, absenteeism and presenteeism rates, healthcare costs, workplace burnout, business ROI, and other factors that affect the functioning of the business.
Businesses that invest in employee wellness programs, reportedly, have lower employee turnover rates, better employee engagement, and higher productivity. However, this does not happen overnight, and the success comes only after a series of trials and errors, accompanied by constant monitoring and improvisation of the existing wellness activities and modules.
Despite the positive statistics, many employers feel the wellness program outcomes are not close to what they had expected. Also, the good numbers are not really reflected in the desired employee health and wellness benefits.
Why is that?
Such uncertainties and queries raise questions about the wellness program strategies – how well they have been planned to meet the employee wellness and business goals, along with the metrics used for evaluation.
In short, a well-planned corporate wellness program should be readily able to –
- Validate its essence
- Produce the presumed outcomes
- Should be worth the spent wellness dollars
- Help with specific employee health and wellness needs
And the best way to gauge if the wellness program is giving the feasible results is to evaluate with the right metrics.
The 2 most common management tools to evaluate performance are – Lagging Indicators and Leading Indicators
Lagging Indicators – They are the most commonly used output-based indicators that are easy to measure. However, they can be a hard factor to be influenced or corrected. For example, weight loss is a Lagging indicator – that can be measured by the changes in the bodyweight, which can be measured by simply stepping on the weighing scale. However, losing weight in itself is a difficult task to be achieved.
Leading Indicators – In contrary to the lagging indicators, the leading indicators are input-based, easy to influence, but hard to measure. For example, to measure the lagging indicator of weight loss, counting calories can be used as a leading indicator. The calorie intake and burned can indicate and influence your weight loss journey. However, they are hard to calculate and measure.
Similarly, employee engagement, workplace culture, burnout, job satisfaction, commitment, and other such factors entailing the business and workplace are examples of leading indicators. These elements influence lagging indicators like ROI, VOI, healthcare costs, turnover rates, etc.
Various factors come into play while implementing and measuring a corporate wellness program, and it is difficult to evaluate the complete impact of all the elements on the wellness program. The health and wellness of every employee are influenced by their specific genetic factors, socioeconomic status, living environment, family history, lifestyle habits, and many other details.
Although it is difficult to measure the full impact of the wellness program, it is not impossible. With the right metrics, you can measure the right ROI and VOI of your employee wellness program.
Perceive Clear Wellness Goals and Concepts
With a clear perception and idea of what you are expecting from the wellness program, you can set and accomplish your workplace wellness goals. Most businesses seek employee wellness programs to improve employee engagement, reduce healthcare costs, and to boost productivity. Define your vision clearly about implementing the wellness program and what you are aspiring to achieve from it. By setting the goals and establishing your concept well, you can lay a strong foundation to design a well-suited corporate wellness program.
Pick The Right Wellness Metrics For Evaluation
When you know what is expected from the wellness program, it becomes easier to choose the metrics and analytics to measure the outcomes. Select and set tracking of the right metrics based on your wellness program parameters. For example, if one of your wellness goals is to boost employee engagement, you need to analyze the factors that drive engagement. Seek feedback or hold a survey to know what your employees need to engage well at the workplace and improve their productivity. Be it rewards, incentives, or some kind of employee benefits and perks, make sure the workforce is compensated well according to their interests and needs.
Evaluate and Assess The Wellness Data
Assess and evaluate all the data based on the outcomes, and the operational details. By addressing the leading and lagging indicators of your company, you can analyze most of the data.
Leading Indicators to evaluate performance –
- What are the enrollment and participation rates?
- What activities are the employees engaging in the most?
Lagging Indicators to evaluate outcomes –
- Is the wellness program meeting the specific wellness needs of the employees?
- Have there been any positive changes in employee health and wellness?
- Has the healthcare costs of engaging employees reduced than the non-participants?
- Has the wellness program impacted the spouses or dependents of the employees?
For your employee wellness program to give the desired outcomes, it is imperative that you set actionable goals and evaluate the right metrics. With the wellness experts and state-of-art wellness platform from Wellness360, it becomes easy for you to design a suitable workplace wellness program and measure your positive outcomes.