Survey shows disconnect between employers, workers over wellness programs
- Employer decision-makers in a Transamerica Center for Health Studies’ survey saw continued positive growth in their wellness programs, reports Employee Benefit News, but the results also showed a disconnect between employers and employees in how each group views those programs.
- Among the 1,500 participants in the study, more than half (55%) of employers said they offer a wellness program, but only 36% of employees said their workplace had such a program. An overwhelming majority of employers (80%) said that management was committed to improving employees’ health through wellness programs, while only one-third of employees agreed.
- EBN says the study also showed that 94% of employers felt employees were satisfied with their healthcare plan, while only 79% of workers expressed satisfaction with their plans.
Disconnects between employers and employees are common. Employers often think they know what employees want, need and like. And employees often think that, since employers are in charge, they should instinctively know what workers want and need. Sometimes polls are the only vehicles employers have for uncovering and rectifying these differences.
Before offering wellness programs, which can be costly to set up, maintain and fund, employers should conduct their own internal polls to find out what kinds of programs their workers want, are likely to use and are willing to pay for.
The Transamerica study shows how vital communication is between employers and workers. On healthcare costs alone, 80% of employers said they’re concerned about healthcare’s affordability and that cost concerns wouldn’t affect employees. But just over half of workers disagreed. This might mean that a significant number of employees are concerned about paying more for benefits like wellness programs.