A wellness program that strives to keep employees healthy is a strategic investment. To curb rising healthcare costs, many employers are advancing workplace health programs to:
- make improvements in the worksite environment,
- help employees adopt healthier lifestyles and,
- ultimately, lower the incidence of costly chronic diseases.
One of the first important steps in creating your employee wellness program is assessment of the work environment. What are your employee needs and preferences? What are your business goals and objectives? Where do nutrition and physical activity fit into the picture? What kind of timeline might be reasonable to accomplish this work?
There are a variety of assessment tools you can use. Here are four for you to consider:
Worksite Health ScoreCard
This tool from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) helps employers assess the presence of best practices in preventing heart disease, stroke, hypertension, diabetes, and obesity, as these chronic conditions account for more than 75% of the nation’s total healthcare spending.
The 125-question ScoreCard is completed by a single employee—human resource manager, health benefits manager, occupational nurse, executive assistant— or small work group responsible for worksite health promotion. The ScoreCard can establish benchmarks and track improvements over time, and the manual includes data to help you compare your company’s scores to similar-sized companies in your industry. The tool is free and available online.
Lifegain Health Culture Audit®
The Lifegain Health Culture Audit® is an anonymous online survey tool completed by all employees. Because the survey is administered to all employees instead of being completed by a single individual or work group, it can not only assess the worksite but also provide a snapshot of employees’ current health behaviors, efforts at lifestyle change, desired wellness program components, and feedback about past wellness initiatives.
Surveys are customized to match the company’s focus areas, so, for example, a company that addresses safety issues in its wellness program will see questions related to workplace safety while a company without those needs will not. The tool includes extensive reporting capabilities, including reports in presentation-ready form. Your results can be compared to other companies who have used the Lifegain Health Culture Audit®. There is a fee to use it, paid directly to the developer.
The Wellness Council of Indiana offers an employee assessment and evaluation process called AchieveWELL. Available to private companies, nonprofits, school corporations, government entities, and universities/colleges at any stage in development of their workplace wellness program, AchieveWELL helps develop workplace wellness strategy based on the key characteristics of proven best practices. AchieveWELL has been conducted for over 25 years.
AchieveWELL’s mentoring and technical assistance comes with the added benefit of official recognition as one of the healthiest workplaces in Indiana. Assessment questionnaires are completed through a combination of online, telephone, email, and in-person meetings, depending on the level of recognition you wish to pursue. AchieveWELL is free to all Wellness Council members. Membership is $2 per person per year with a minimum of $199 and a maximum of $1,900. Organizations can also just purchase AchieveWELL á la carte.
Jump IN Pledge Assessment
We offer a simple, free assessment tool comprised of 8 questions that correspond with recognized best practices you might choose to implement as part of your workplace wellness program. While it is not as extensive as the assessment tools described above and does not provide comparison data to help you see how your company stacks up against others, it does help users think about policies and practices across a variety of wellness topics and track changes over time.
The Jump IN Pledge Assessment, like the CDC ScoreCard and AchieveWELL, is designed to be completed by an individual or small work group.
All of these assessment tools can help your company identify opportunities to improve wellness, set goals for the year, and evaluate progress over time.
Need convincing return on investment (ROI) data to make the case for a workplace wellness program? Read more.
Topics: Employer Wellness
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