We at the Delaware Coalition for Healthy Eating and Active Living (DE HEAL) and the Governor’s Council on Health Promotion and Disease Prevention have embraced the opportunity to provide employers an online employee wellness toolkit with clear steps to follow, as well as examples of wellness policies, programs and activities that employers can adapt to their specific employee populations and workplace environments.
How and Why We Developed the Employee Wellness Toolkit
In 2012 the DE HEAL Worksite Wellness Setting conducted a survey of 75 Delaware employers to serve as a high level needs assessment and provide baseline data to inform the Setting’s work. Representatives from several local employers (including Christiana Care Health System, Eagle Group, ING Direct, Printpack, Purdue Farms, and YMCA of Delaware) participated in the strategic planning process, as well as in the development of the survey tool.
First-of-its-kind Survey from Employers throughout Delaware
This first-of-its-kind survey was designed to collect information from employers of varying size throughout Delaware, including:
- number of employees;
- existing wellness programs;
- workplace environment;
- wellness program barriers and concerns; and
- employer wellness-related needs.
Results of the Survey
The 2012 employer survey affirmed a need to implement employee wellness programs in Delaware. The survey also established that current workplace wellness programs are generally not comprehensive or robust with regard to providing a healthy environment, activities, services and incentives for employees.
Survey Indicated an Urgent Need for Employee Wellness Programs
The findings from the Delaware Employer Workplace Wellness Survey indicated that:
- 56% of employers surveyed have not established a workplace wellness or health promotion program.
- 88% of employers believe that worksite wellness programs can decrease rates of illness and injury among employees.
- 72% of employers reported that having examples of free and low-cost worksite wellness programs and policies would motivate them to implement workplace wellness programs.
How Employee Wellness Programs Can Benefit Your Business
Besides the very obvious fact that healthy employees are happy employees, employee wellness programs increase productivity, decrease costs and improve employee morale. Here are some important benefits of employee wellness programs and how they can increase productivity and decrease costs for your business.