According to an article by Shirley Archer, JD, MA, in the May 2012 issue of IDEA Fitness Journal, workplace wellness is poised for growth. The National Business Group on Health estimates that the industry will grow 18% over the next five years. Why? About 67% of the workforce is overweight or obese, and there has been a 36% hike in healthcare spending associated with obesity in recent years.
Studies on the effects of wellness programs on healthcare costs and absenteeism found that every dollar spent yielded an average savings of $3.27 in medical costs and an average savings of $2.73 in absenteeism.
In addition to an attractive ROI, employers are realizing that wellness programs have significant VOI (value of the investment). The VOI includes:
- Creating a culture of health
- Being viewed as caring about employees
- Attracting the best employees
- Increasing employee satisfaction and retention
- Having higher employee morale
- Improving productivity
- Motivating employees to think they are an important part of a larger mission
- Being recognized as one of the healthiest companies in the community