Between the pandemic and the Great Resignation, keeping quality employees is a hot topic for 2022. Employee turnover was already a huge issue, but when four million employees resigned in April 2021, during the Great Resignation, it created a moment of panic for companies and HR managers nationwide. As employers compete for talent, insurance carriers must offer benefits that employees will value.
Here’s a checklist of major ticket items that should be considered when creating a wellness package for employers. While each category has a benefit for employees, employers may find their employees have specific needs for benefits. It’s important to keep these in mind, along with wellness trends to determine what insurance plans are best.
Mental Health Resources
Among Mental Health Resources, one of the most popular benefits is the Employer Assistance Program, giving employees the choice of anonymous and on-demand counseling and referral.
Other mental health help includes more traditional evaluations and a set number of meetings with a counselor, and in- or out-patient care, whether for mental health help, or substance abuse treatment. Many times, the employer’s industry can help show what services will best bolster employee mental health.
This type of benefit can decrease the effects of stress on turnover and also employee productivity. Once work environment stressors are determined using online surveys and other assessments, a multi-pronged approach can be created to meet employer needs to improve morale.
Continuous quality improvement will fine-tune the effort, with help from Human Resources, and keep employers and their employees happy and engaged.
There is a great variety of fitness programs to choose from. From local gym memberships and discounts to online training, the sky is the limit. Today, on-demand fitness continues as a growing trend, due to the pandemic.
Virtual exercise options and easy-access benefits that are cyber are now expected by many employees, and employers offer them for both popularity, but also their secondary benefits of decreasing health care costs.
Weight loss and smoking cessation can be wrapped up into either the fitness portion of benefits or sometimes the medical insurance side of things. Counseling on such issues, using statistics, can help change mindsets. For instance, a smoker who spends $5 each day on cigarettes can save $1,825 each year by forgoing smoking. That kind of financial information can change someone’s lifelong habits.
Wellness coaching has become popular, so employees can talk through their goals and needs, and receive expert advice on meeting their goals. Benefit plans that encourage creating and meeting goals can have a big payout for employers because employees feel engaged and also feel they have a voice.
Gym Membership Programs
Some large-scale companies offer their own on-site gym, while others offer gym memberships to a local club or a national chain. Still yet, others offer a significant discount for a long-term membership.
If this is a benefit certain employers believe will suit their employees, it is a good idea not just for employee engagement, but also for increasing general employee health and decreasing health care costs. This is important to mention again. A survey said that more than 60% of employers had reduced health care costs, thanks to workplace wellness programs.
Financial Wellness Resources
HR professionals today include Financial Wellness Resources among wellness packages because finances are a huge source of stress for many employees. Some package benefits include only coverage such as financial counseling, or could include retirement investments and other savings vehicles.
Health Savings Account HSA
Many health plans include health savings accounts, a more prevalent benefit than we saw 20 years ago. It’s quite common today and many employees with families value it because they can plan for the unforeseen. HSAs allow employees to save pre-tax dollars for qualified medical expenses down the road.
Some medical plans rely on HSAs as a major foundational element in their offerings. If this is the only coverage carriers offer for paying medical expenses, they should take extra time to help employers explain how employees can fully access and use the HR benefit to their greatest advantage.
Many employees today won’t take advantage of a specific benefit that meets a specific issue, but instead, want a well-rounded approach to their health and wellness. They want the ability to reach out and choose what will meet their needs, whether it’s a resource for physical and mental health, workout classes, or another benefit.
Companies like Peerfit can partner with insurance carriers to offer a wide variety of benefits, so each employee feels like a need is being met. With Peerfit, these benefits are at no cost for the employee but instead are covered by insurance.
Another important aspect of wellness benefits is keeping employees informed of their options. This is important not just for employee benefits compliance, but it also helps to get plan notices out in time. It’s also important so employees feel they are informed, increasing their sense of happiness with employers. Strategic communications is an important success factor in creating a workplace wellness program that succeeds.