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Workplace Wellness Programs

Many senior leaders of progressive organizations know instinctively that workplace wellness initiatives are an investment in the health and productivity of their workforce. Yet, during times of economic restraint, these programs are often cut or scaled back to improve a company’s short-term bottom line. Therefore, to ensure the sustainability of their programs, wellness practitioners must be prepared to demonstrate their beneficial impact to the business, in terms of lower benefit costs, reduced absenteeism and presenteeism, and higher productivity.

Recent Conference Board of Canada research, “Making the Business Case for Investments in Workplace Health and Wellness”, has found that employers are still at the infancy stages when it comes to evaluating wellness programs. Although about one-third of employers measure program outcomes, less than 1% of organizations analyze the return on investment (ROI) of their workplace wellness programs in a rigorous way. Being able to demonstrate positive changes in the general employee population’s health profile is usually enough to satisfy most senior leaders.

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Louise Chénier
Louise Chénier is a manager at Workplace Health and Wellness Research for The Conference Board of Canada
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