It’s no secret that America’s healthcare costs are high. In fact, study after study has shown that healthcare in the United States is more expensive than just about anywhere else in the world. And, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), those costs are only going to keep rising. Which means that the things associated with healthcare — like health insurance, for example — are also going to get more expensive.
You want to make sure your employees are taken care of — after all, healthy employees are productive employees — but how do you reconcile your desire to care for your workers with the ever-increasing strain on your wallet?
There Is One Simple Way to Save on Group Health Insurance Costs
The easiest way to save money on health insurance costs is to keep your employees as happy and healthy as possible! How? By implementing a company-wide wellness program, custom-made to help your employees reduce their stress at work and develop life-long healthy habits.
If that sounds simplistic or unrealistic, fair enough. We understand that no one can completely avoid seeing a doctor all of the time, nor would we want to encourage that. Rather, we’re suggesting that you help reduce the number of preventable health insurance claims employees often make due to things like work-related stress.
Think of it like this: If an employee is stressed out by their job, it can affect them mentally, causing anxiety or depression. But it can also affect them physically, by raising their blood pressure, for example. Any of those conditions may warrant a trip to the doctor’s office, prescription drugs, referrals to specialists, or other expensive tests or procedures that can quickly add up. But if an employee feels energized and happy at work, all of those expenses vanish.
And the best part of all this? It’s not uncommon for health insurance companies to offer discounts to employers whose businesses have company-wide wellness programs. So that’s even more money in your pocket!
How to Spot a Wellness Program Health Insurance Companies Will Love
Of course, “wellness program” is a vague term with all sorts of possible definitions. Determining what works best for your company versus what won’t break the bank can feel like a bit of a juggling act at first. Every company approaches wellness differently. Some companies focus on diet, some on mindfulness or stress reduction, others on mindfulness, and some on some combination of the three. And that’s just the tip of the wellness iceberg!
How will you know what works best for your company? We have some suggestions of what qualities you can watch out for that consistently improve worker health and company culture.
It should cater to your business on a micro and macro level
The best wellness programs are people-first. They cater to your employees’ needs on an individual basis and tailor-make challenges and goals for each person to achieve at their own pace.
But they’re also able to see the big picture. A wellness program that encourages the cooperation (and maybe a little friendly competition) between individual employees boosts both engagement and enjoyment. Plus, it encourages employees to get to know each other better, even among departments they might not otherwise socialize with. This cross-department-pollinization can lead to incredible collaborative opportunities that wouldn’t have happened otherwise.
It should be as comprehensive as possible
Some wellness programs focus on just one thing, like diet or mindfulness. But a great wellness program knows that all elements of wellness influence and support each other like the webbing of a net. The structure itself is only strong when all the individual elements are strong together; even one weak knot or rope can render the whole thing useless.
When we eat healthier, for example, we are more energized and better able to focus. This makes our workouts more efficient, increases our willpower, and makes it easier to come down from high-stress periods during the day. These things also help us sleep better, which in turn helps regulate our appetite, making us less susceptible to things like mindless daytime snacking. When our appetite isn’t controlling our eating decisions, it’s easier to eat healthier, and so the cycle begins anew. Every healthy habit we build strengthens our other healthy habits. That’s why, when it comes to health, it’s better to be a generalist than a master of just one thing.
It should focus on slow and steady behavioral change
Learning how to completely change your behavior is hard enough. But changing the behavior of all your employees? That’s a Herculean task for sure! But don’t let it intimidate you. Any good wellness program knows better than to promise you massive, sweeping, overnight changes. No one can completely change who they are or how they behave in such a short amount of time. In fact, that kind of expectation can do more harm than good.
Instead, slow and steady is the key to wellness success. Starting small — like having one walking meeting a week, or offering healthier snack options in the breakroom — isn’t as exciting, but it’s far more likely to get you the results you’re looking for. Tiny incremental changes to behavior over weeks or months of time add up. This is a marathon, not a sprint. Doing too much too quickly will only lead to discouragement and burnout when things go wrong.
But when the goals you set are just challenging enough, achieving them can be extremely satisfying. Don’t forget to celebrate your wins!
A “Fabulous” Solution to Your Health Insurance Woes
Of course, you may still be overwhelmed by possibilities, or unsure where to start. The wellness world is a vast and confusing one. Information can often be contradictory or conflicting. Sure, you want to save on health insurance costs, but you’ve still got a business to run! You can’t become a corporate wellness expert overnight.
So, why not consult some wellness experts and have them do the heavy lifting for you? If that sounds more your speed, you may want to check out Fabulous’s latest program, Fabulous for Work.
Fabulous is a habit-building and life coaching app that’s been transforming lives for over five years now. We have over 10 million app downloads and excellence awards from both Apple and Google Play. We’ve been helping individuals and now, we’re helping businesses like yours. In just 8 weeks, we can help teach your teams the life-changing healthy habits they need to reduce their stress levels, eat better, feel more focused and energized, and accomplish more during the day.
And all the while, employees will engage more with each other, cultivating a more open and positive company culture that will make everyone happier and more productive.
If you’re ready to implement some positive changes into your business while also saving some serious money on health insurance, check out thefabulous.co/work to sign up and learn more today.