How HR Professionals Can Use Employee Wellness Program Statistics to Their Advantage

By Dr. Jack Singer

As an HR Professional, I know you’ve been there and done that: trying your best to convince your CEO about the benefits that employee and workplace wellness programs will bring to the company. While you can state statistics about how stress mastery workshops, for example, will reduce healthcare costs, your CEO is mainly concerned with the bottom line so your argument falls on deaf ears. If you’ve become frustrated while trying to convince your CEO that wellness programs will impact the company’s bottom line, you’ll love these new employee wellness program statistics that can fuel your argument.

There is significant research reported by the American Psychological Association’s Center for Organizational Excellence, which each year identifies top companies that satisfy the criteria for employee and workplace wellness.

Three separate studies published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, show that companies that emphasize employee wellness are fiscally healthier.

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All three studies looked for publically traded companies with robust, comprehensive workplace wellness programs. These publically traded companies either won awards for their wellness programs or satisfied rigorous criteria for programs that promote employee health.

Hypothetical stock portfolios of these companies were created, with the researchers making a simulated investment. In the three separate studies, the simulated portfolios were followed for 14, 14, and 6 years, respectively.

Employee Wellness Program Statistics for Companies That Met the Criteria

In all three studies, the portfolios of employee wellness-oriented companies significantly outperformed the S&P over the duration of the multi-year studies.

One group of companies outperformed the S&P by an average of 13% per year, a second group averaged 15% superiority per year, and the third group averaged 8% superior performance per year.

In summary, there were strong relationships between companies with documented, best practice wellness programs and the consistently strong financial returns of their stock. Of course, this suggests that these companies had robust bottom lines.

Bottom Line Implications for Your Organization

As you know, it is difficult to derive cause and effect conclusions from correlational data, but since so many companies that emphasized best practice wellness programs outperformed their competitors as it pertains to their stock value over a period of many years, it suggests that these companies are thriving financially. Certainly, their wellness programs and the effects of those programs on their most valued assets, their employees, must be considered to be a portion of the reason for that success. Add these employee wellness program statistics to your argument and you just might convince your CEO that wellness programs are good for the company’s employees – and its bottom line.