Employee wellness programs have often been viewed as a nice extra, not a strategic imperative. But the data show otherwise. The ROI on comprehensive, well-run employee wellness programs can be as high as 6 to 1.

The most successful programs have six essential pillars: engaged leadership at multiple levels; strategic alignment with the company’s identity and aspirations; a design that is broad in scope and high in relevance and quality; broad accessibility; internal and external partnerships; and effective communications.

Companies in a variety of industries have included all six pillars in their employee wellness programs and have reaped big rewards in the form of lower health care costs, greater productivity, and higher morale.

Leonard Berry

Texas A&M University – Department of Marketing

Ann M. Mirabito

Baylor University – Hankamer School of Business

William B Baun

University of Texas at Houston – M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

Harvard Business Review, December 2010
Mays Business School Research Paper No. 2012-68

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