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Best Practice Tips for Companies Implementing Wellness Programs

According GoLocalProv Business/Health Expert Amy Gallagher, the secret to a successful wellness program is “frequent, action-oriented, deliberate, and detailed outreach.”  In her May 21, 2012 blog post, Gallagher outlines best-practice tips to help boost participation.  Included among them are:

  • Announce the program: In order to jump-start any wellness initiative, Gallagher argues a company must make the program rollout an event, as opposed to a written or emailed communication.  During this event, the employer must emphasize why program participation is important, and must also encourage involvement of leadership.
  • Provide program portal: Written materials for wellness programs, including program descriptions, incentive plan design, incentive schedule, activities, and calendar of events, should be posted on companies’ benefit portals for anytime access by employees.
  • Provide wellness portal: While program portals serve to provide a plan description/benefit summary, wellness portals serve as a hub of wellness activity.  Gallagher suggests making them a “go-to place for education, resources, team-based challenges, incentive tracking, and social networking.”  But, she advises to keep these portals active, as they’re not “valuable unless they’re used to drive employees online with regular messages.”
  • Share success stories: By sharing success stories, companies can both motivate employees already involved in wellness initiatives and can encourage those who aren’t to join in on the fun.  “A little healthy competition is a great way to encourage other employees to reach their goals as well,” Gallagher writes.

Whether it’s by organizing a kickoff meeting or by swapping stories after reaching individual and company goals, employers must be sure to communicate their wellness initiatives to their employees.  Doing so could lead to healthy, more productive work lives for all parties involved.

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