Employee well-being is a priority and differentiating factor in companies’ value proposition
A recent analysis from Willis Towers Watson shows that the ’employee well-being’ factor, which has been slowly gaining integers in company goals over the past five years, has become a strategic priority for many organizations due to health, social and economic crisis generated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The diagnosis of the state of social policies in companies carried out by Willis Towers Watson shows that in Spain, there is less and less lack of strategy in this regard. 51% of companies have already implemented this strategy (compared to 35% in 2015), 9% are in the process of developing it and articulating it with objectives and goals defined for each program, and the same percentage (9% ) plans to do so within the next 3 years.
Likewise, 42% of companies that have a wellness strategy in place have already established a plan to communicate it effectively to the workforce and have been able to customize – based on employee priorities and preferences – their wellness program and differentiate it from other companies with which it competes for talent. According to data from the consulting firm, by 2024, around 90% of companies that have developed a wellness strategy will meet both premises.
For Gema Jimnez, Business Development Director of Health and Benefits at Willis Towers Watson Iberia, “Companies are increasingly improving their strategies to make wellbeing an important differentiator in their value proposition, key to attracting and retain Talent. They focus on employee experience and communication, but not forgetting areas such as programs to increase workforce participation in wellness programs; ongoing evaluation of its effectiveness and the overall design and implementation of the wellness program; or the analysis of the total costs linked to prevention and care (company and employee). “
Employee experience as a center
Companies continue to scale up their offerings to address the physical, emotional, financial and social well-being of employees, with a greater emphasis on developing an engaging employee experience that connects to the profiles of the workforce. work with different needs.
In this sense, Willis Towers Watson’s analysis examines the state of articulation of six key areas of wellness programs with the employee value proposition: embedding inclusion and diversity in the values and culture of organization (already implemented). businesses); integrate health and well-being into the value proposition (already done by 48% of companies); consider psychological safety as a fundamental element of the mission and well-being objectives of the organization (already active in 41% of companies); highlight employee stories and important moments (implemented by 36% of companies); and focus the design of wellness programs on people (34%).
In this sense, Gema Jimnez explains that “the ratios have improved over the past five or six years but there is still a great room for improvement, especially with regard to the need for wellness strategies and programs. focused on the wants, preferences, needs, experiences and demands of the people they are intended for. We must never forget that the center of each program must be the employee, who must benefit from the best experience and from a “psychologically safe” work environment in which he feels supported, allowing him to take risks without fear. negative consequences concerning their image, status or career development ”.
Recognizing this, companies are taking steps to increase employee engagement in their wellness programs. Among the most significant trends, the analysis reveals that 46% of them communicate periodically to employees on general issues related to well-being, including advice and suggestions; The same percentage uses virtual solutions to reach employees who work remotely and facilitate their access to different resources and programs; or that 32% of companies deploy promotional and branding campaigns to engage employees and direct them to the appropriate resources (telemedicine and virtual healthcare solutions, employee assistance programs, etc.).
With a lower degree of implementation (less than 25%), there are also measures such as having a solid communication plan that includes certain moments in the employee’s life (birth or adoption of children, marriage , loss of a loved one, graduation, etc.); use testimonials and viral messages to communicate through the company’s social networks; or use incentives to stimulate employee participation and engagement in wellness programs.
Businesses find wellness efforts to be effective both physically and emotionally, as well as financially and socially. The data in the report shows, among other data, that 43% of the companies analyzed claim that their initiatives have encouraged employees to participate in healthy lifestyle activities; 32% who have been of great help in training resilient employees able to face the difficulties they encounter in their professional and personal performance; and that 57% say wellness programs have been essential in creating a sense of community and belonging to the company among employees.
This high program efficiency is also associated, on the one hand, with increased employee productivity, with improvements, depending on the area, of between 8 and 28 percentage points. On the other hand, with a higher degree of satisfaction of these with the company, showing metrics such as, among others, that 87% of employees would recommend the company as a place to work; 86% say they make a greater effort than expected to help the organization succeed; 81% feel able to effectively manage professional challenges with their work teams; o 79% think that their work gives them a feeling of personal fulfillment.
For Gema Jimnez “Over the past five years, the general management has shown more and more its support for the well-being of employees and has promoted measures to improve their experience, reshape their working environment, offer training and provide a support for families. It is a path in which we must continue to move forward and in which the main challenges to be overcome come from two fronts: the increasing costs involved in wellness programs and the fragmented – rather than holistic – implementation. – of these wellness programs.