LAS VEGAS — Building your own workplace wellness program takes work — and time — but it’s worth it.
“It’s an investment we need to make,” Jennifer Bartlett, HR director at Griffin Communication, told a group of benefits managers during a session at the Human Resource Executive Health and Benefits Leadership Conference. “We want [employees] to be healthy and happy, and if they’re healthy and happy they’ll be more productive.”
Bartlett shared her experiences building, and (continually) tweaking, a wellness program at her company–a multimedia company running TV outlets across Oklahoma — over the last seven years. “If there was a contest or challenge we’ve done it,” she said, noting there have been some failed ventures.
“We got into wellness because we wanted to reduce health costs, but that’s not why we do it today,” she said. “We do it today because employees like it and it increases morale and engagement.”
Though the company’s wellness program is extensive and covers more than the list below, here are some components of it that’s working out well that your company might want to steal.
Fitbit challenge. Yes, Fitbits can make a difference, Bartlett said. The way she implemented a program was to have a handful of goals and different levels as not everyone is at the same pace — some might walk 20,000 steps in a day, while someone else might strive for 5,000. There are also competition and rewards attached. At Griffin Communications, the company purchased a number of Fitbits, then sold them to its employees for half the cost. It even offered payroll deduction so employees could pay just a few bucks per month to pay for the device. “Everyone can benefit by moving more,” Bartlett said. “It’s simple and it’s universal.”