When employers were asked if wellness was a priority, companies replied with a resounding and collective “yes”. According to a survey by Colliers International Group, 85% of respondents said employee wellness ranked at the top of company initiatives.
The survey also revealed why companies are investing in employee wellness. Employee demand ranked number one for why wellness is a priority followed by competing with peers as a close second. Reduction in healthcare costs ranked second to last just ahead of employee productivity. This is a telling statistic because, if the survey is accurate, companies are launching wellness programs to satisfy employee demand and because others are doing it rather than a genuine interest in seeing their employees thrive. This puts the practice in dangerous territory. With so many companies launching wasteful and potentially harmful programs, a “follow the leader” strategy by their peers will only result in widespread adoption of ineffective solutions.
The proliferation of bad wellness ideas for the wrong reasons also thwarts good ideas. The survey showed that fitness monitoring was the least adopted wellness program with only 26% of companies supporting employee use of consumer wellness technologies like Fitbit. Despite being far superior solutions, consumer wellness solutions cannot lead the enterprise wellness market because companies are slow to adopt new ideas (even when they have shown success).
It is a shame to see fitness monitoring at 26% adoption, but not all is lost. As Fitbit and others continue to innovate and win the attention of consumers (employees), companies will be forced to incorporate them into their programs. To do this correctly, employers need to adopt a consumer wellness strategy, which is characterized not just by the devices and apps it supports but also the solutions it excludes, many of which are popular today like employee wellness assessments. Download this free eBook on what a consumer wellness strategy is and why employers should implement one now.