In the News: Top 11 reasons why your wellness program isn’t working

For several years now, companies have been adding increasing wellness options to their benefits arsenal in an effort to improve the health of their employees – and, well, maybe trim a little off those insurance premiums! However, during those years, very few companies can boast that their employees are becoming fitter, healthier versions of their former selves, largely due to a lack of participation.

HealthMine, a provider of a personalized health portal for businesses and insurers, attempted to figure out what is keeping these employees from participating in their employers’ wellness programs. In their answers, employees highlighted the following 11 barriers:
1.Lack of time (27%)
2.Inconvenient location (25%)
3.Inconvenient time (24%)
4.Awareness of program (17%)
5.Privacy concerns (14%)
6.Pressure to finish work (13%)
7.Security concerns (13%)
8.Lack of boss’ support (10%)
9.Too busy working (9%)
10.Simply not interested (9%), and
11.Family doesn’t support it (5%).

So what are the take aways here for the employer? HealthMine CEO and President Bryce Williams said the most obvious answer is for plan sponsors to help workers “by making programs more convenient and meeting people where they are.” He notes that participation could be further boosted with enhanced communication and upper-management support so that employees know that the programs are not just being offered, but that participation is being encouraged by upper level management.