A recent survey of 464 employers in the U.S. and Canada found that 62% of the organizations had wellness programs for their employees and another 15% said they intended to offer such a plan. When asked to identify the perceived benefits of their plans, employers cited improved employee health, higher morale, lower medical claims, reduced absenteeism, increased productivity and decreased turnover.

The author of this piece is troubled that 41% of employers surveyed said they didn’t know how wellness plans benefited their companies. Worse, 87% said they didn’t know what kind of return on investment (ROI) was generated by their programs. The danger, says one expert, is that without evidence of such returns employers will be less likely to form a long-term commitment to wellness.

This article concludes with a section devoted to helping determine returns on investment for wellness programs and provides readers with examples of impressive overall cost savings achieved by health-conscious companies.

Source: Joel Dresang, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel; May 31, 2007

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