3 Ways To Boost Employee Engagement With Wellness Programs

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As the pandemic spreads and staff burnout has raged, mental health and wellness programs have become more important to employees. However, many employees are not familiar with or using these offers. Here are three ways to boost engagement in these programs among staff, reported by the Harvard business review October 5.

“The Great Resignation” shed light on the number of employees who seek a better work-life balance and prioritize their mental well-being. As a result, many employers have responded to these challenges by increasing their offerings of support. A study by Gartner showed that of the 77 organizations surveyed, 64% had implemented new wellness programs by 2020. A 2021 report, however, showed that despite 87% of employees having access to wellness offers be, only 23% use them.

To ensure employees reap the benefits of offerings and organizations maximize their investments, here are three ways to boost employee engagement with these programs:

1. Increase awareness

Many employees are unaware of their wellness options, with a 2020 study finding that less than 42% of employees knew their companies offered wellness programs. It is therefore important that human resources communicate clearly and effectively with employees about offers, ensuring that they understand that they are eligible for the programs and that they are encouraged to participate. Having senior executives and leadership teams talking about their experiences with the offerings could also help raise awareness.

2. Reduce stigma

The stigma surrounding mental health issues is still strong and can prevent employees from seeking help. To overcome stigma, companies can equip trusted managers with the tools to open a dialogue with their employees on these sensitive issues. Other employees can also be encouraged to share their successes by using the programs to create more peer connections.

3. Take the time

Often, those who need support the most have the least time and energy to seek it. Of those who said they had the option of participating in a wellness program but didn’t, 38% cited being too busy as a reason. To make sure employees are getting the care they need, HR managers can use an opt-out design in which all staff are enrolled for some benefit and have the option to leave. Companies can also create global recharge days where the majority of the workforce is given on the same day off.


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