Corporate wellness programs used to mean having a gym in the office, or posting motivational pictures on the wall with text reading “Take the stairs today.”

Companies are financially incentivized to create wellness programs that actually work. Rising insurance rates necessitate employers to make a shift.

A recent survey reported that nearly 90 percent of employers offer wellness incentives to employees who improve their health..

Employers are experimenting with many incentive models to find those that are the most effective.

Who is ETS Tech Solutions?

ETS Tech Solutions is a software company of 65 employees that creates proprietary software solutions for private companies and local government offices.

It’s difficult for employees to get the recommended amount of exercise since the nature of the work is sedentary with long hours often required.

The Key Issue

Health insurance expenditures by ETS Tech Solutions were on the rise due to the lifestyle-related health conditions of its employees.

Managers had also noticed an increase of sick days taken within the previous year. This highlighted the need for health to become a company priority. ETS looked into several wellness programs before deciding on a flexible, employee-friendly solution.

Increasing the Fun Factor of Corporate Wellness Programs

Working with Inspire Marketing Services, ETS Tech Solutions introduced a wellness program to “gamify” health.

ETS Tech ask their employees to set a goal related to health and fitness. This could be something small (walking 10 minutes everyday), big (taking a million steps in three months), or fun (earning a new belt in karate). Any goal was fair game.

For every level they progressed towards their goal, they would wear a different color shirt each Friday. Each Friday team meeting, employees who achieved their goals would get the next color shirt (red, yellow, green, to blue) .

When an employee reached a goal, they would receive a $100 gift certificate to the company webstore.

The Results

Employees loved the freedom to choose their own healthy activities, which ranged from morning jogs, to lunchtime walks, to self-defense classes.

The initiative also created fun competition. Workmates started helping each other to achieve their goals while trying to reach them faster.

Within three months, managers noticed a trend towards fewer sick days and a more energetic ambience around the office.

Our Conclusion

Employers all around the country are discovering the benefits of employee wellness programs.

Good corporate wellness programs that employees enjoy can significantly lower health care costs, improve productivity, reduce leave, and boost morale.

The secret to an effective wellness program, however, is in the incentive. Tangible rewards (rather than cash or gift cards) have been proven to be remembered longer and valued more highly.

With a company webstore, implementing a wellness program everyone enjoys is easy.