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Wellness that Works! (Part 4)

Physical therapyWelcome to the 4th installment of wellness that works.

For the past 2 months we have covered what wellness is, how to get leadership involved, and how to get employees to participate. Today we will look at how to determine if the wellness program has been effective at reaching the goals and what objectives should be considered when determine the goals for the program.

I have watched many wellness programs begin, and end, with no real tangible outcomes. It is great to have an ongoing wellness program that is aimed at increasing the health of your workers, but if you cannot show that the investment is worth the cost, it might be on the cutting block as soon as dollars need to be freed up. In this economy, that usually results in a wellness program with a very short lifespan. So it becomes vital to be able to demonstrate measurable outcomes. In addition not only should those measurements be part of the discussion on the effectiveness of the program but it can truly “drive” the program itself.

The first step is determining the mission or vision statement for your program. What are the overall goals that you hope to achieve with the implementation of this wellness program? This statement should envelop the future vision that you are trying to achieve.

After you have built the mission or vision, you need to determine the goal and objectives for the program. When determining the objectives, make every attempt to use clear, measurable goals with timelines. It should be easy to determine if the objectives have been met and if done so in the expected time frame.

Examples of wellness program goals and objectives include:

Improve employee’s health habits
  • Reduce the number of employees who smoke from 13 percent to 10 percent by the end of the year.
  • Improve employee Health Risk Assessment scores by 25% by end of the year.
Improve productivity
  • Decrease the amount of absent days by 1 day per employee.
  • Increase production levels by 4%.
Lower or contain medical care costs
  • Reduce Medical Costs by 10% by end of year.
  • Reduce Worker Comp costs by 5% by end of year.

When determine goals and objectives it can be helpful to use the SMART formula to set up both your long and short-term objectives:

  • Specific (one behavior or outcome)
  • Measurable (one result that can be observed or evaluated),
  • Attainable (but also challenging),
  • Realistic (do you have the resources to achieve?), and
  • Time specific (within 3 months – up to 5 years)

Now that you have read this four part series you should be ready to start a successful sustainable wellness program. You will find that if done properly adding a wellness component to your facility will not only increase the health of your employees but also positively impact the morale and productivity levels!

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