Using incentives to boost engagement with health and wellness programs
As they go about propping up their levels of corporate health and wellness, human resources offices across the nation are finding it beneficial to mandate their health objectives through well-regulated programs. By putting a wellness program in place, any company can help its employees to become better off physically, mentally or even financially.
Wellness programs have become a fundamental part of HR. Any time a business has any goal for improving the workforce – whether it’s exercising more, eating better, screening for disease or managing money – that goal is easier to achieve when there are defined rules and regulations in place for making it happen. Any company that institutes an employee assistance program is going to be better off than one that doesn’t.
The challenge, though, lies in getting people to opt in. What do you do if you have a great wellness program that can make people’s lives immeasurably better, only your employees aren’t bothering to sign up? This problem can be a disconcerting one, and it’s one that sadly, all too many HR offices face.
One solution is to use more incentives to nudge employees in the right direction. When it comes to using EAPs, motivating factors can come in all different forms – you may sometimes opt for the “carrot” approach, using rewards in a positive way to reinforce good behaviors, or you may alternatively go with the “stick” to discourage employees from neglecting their health needs.
One of your primary goals when instituting an EAP should be to drive up participation among employees. With incentives, this becomes far easier – everyone will feel more compelled to sign up if they have a little something extra to motivate them.
Ideally, you want to have not just any incentives, but in particular, ones that fit your company’s culture. How would you describe your workforce? What kind of people are they, and what types of gifts will most appeal to them? Considering these questions will help improve EAP participation more effectively.
There’s no shortage of local, state and federal regulation hanging over corporate health and wellness these days. When putting an EAP in place, it’s important to fight for employees’ health while also maintaining compliant with every relevant law. This should be an area of emphasis.
Finally, a key goal is to make sure you don’t have to break the bank in order to meet wellness objectives. HR departments’ budgets are finite and they have a lot of competing interests to consider – it’s vital to maximize the impact of every single dollar that’s invested in employees’ wellness.