I’d like to conclude this series about a digital employee value proposition for the financial service industry by looking at the role of wellness programs in engaging employees.

Most large organizations today have some sort of wellness program in place for their employees, though these vary in terms of sophistication and success. With the growing demand for work-life balance from employees, wellness programs can play an important role in retaining staff, motivating them and even spurring workplace collaboration.

Most financial services employers understand the benefits of reducing healthcare costs and days of productivity lost to unnecessarily as a result of poor health, but the impact of wellness programs in terms of the employee experience should also not be underestimated.  Wellness programs can infuse energy into the workplace and provide employees with an opportunity to connect with others. They help unite the organization’s people around a common purpose and show that the company cares about their mental and physical wellbeing.

Over the past two or three years, wearable technologies (such as smart watches and fitness bands) have started to revolutionize wellness programs by making it easier for employees to set and track their health and wellness goals. These devices, paired with mobile apps and web portals, allow individual employees to keep track of their vital signs and health indicators, and strive to improve them through exercise and healthier diet.

They can also help promote collaboration through social challenges or communal exercise programs, and keep employees engaged by means of gamification. Digital health coaching apps can also help employees to improve themselves – which can be an important benefit, given that many employees are as keen to improve their wealth and fitness as they are to advance at work.

In the background, the HR department will be able to track health and productivity goals for the organization, which can help it to measure its success in engaging the workforce and create strategies to reduce the costs of absenteeism caused by illness. Some key success factors in developing wellness programs are as follows:

  • Make it easy for employees to access and enroll on the company’s health and wellness programs. It should be simple for them to join from an app or a website.
  • Providing employees with a choice of apps, devices and programs so they can find options that meet their needs and goals.
  • Giving rewards and incentive to employees who succeed in meeting personalized health improvement targets.
  • Ensuring that leaders are engaged in the wellness program and lead by example.

You can see earlier entries in this series to read about other elements of a successful employee value proposition for a bank or insurer. Thank you for taking the time to read these posts, and I welcome your thoughts.

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