Benefitexpress is excited to introduce a new guest blog series, where we feature thought leaders, partners and experts from across the employee benefits industry.
To kick off the series, we have a post from health plan and employee wellbeing experts, DHS Group. DHS Group “works to achieve better health outcomes and cost savings using an advanced data warehouse, population health science and member engagement tools.”
This week, DHS Group shares how to implement a “full-circle” program of population health analytics, well-being and engagement through utilization of your existing benefits administration and strategy programs.
“According to the World Health Organization (WHO), between a quarter and a third of adults globally are not active enough, and their inactivity is having long-term effects on their health,” Willis Towers Watson reports in their 2017 Global Benefits Attitudes Survey. “… In response, employers are seeking physical health and well-being solutions for their workforces, both to reduce costs and in recognition of the links between health, well-being and productivity.”
And it’s not just physical health that’s coming to the attention of employers across the globe, rather, things like financial health, mental health and stress are joining the conversation. However, while the need is clearly there – and that need is known – there is still a deficit, seen by both employers and employees, when it comes to health and wellbeing offerings.
“… Only around one-third of employees globally say their employer’s health and well-being programs have helped them live healthier lives,” WTW said. “Moreover, only about two in five employees say these health and well-being programs meet their needs."
How can those numbers improve? By building “full-circle” programs that rely on the benefits administration and strategy programs already in place and grow to include valuable pieces of the puzzle in population health analytics, wellbeing and engagement.
- Population Health Analytics: Alongside strong benefits strategy and administration plans, population health analytics can help leadership better understand the health of their employees and also the related health spending – an understanding that leads to better investment in health and healthier employees.
- Well-being: With the roots of health and well-being taken care of through benefits strategy and administration and an understanding of population health analytics, putting the right well-being plan into action for your employees is a big step. Instead of focusing on just a “step-challenge component,” find a well-being program that includes all pieces of the puzzle – including financial, mental and physical health.
- Engagement: Engagement is the final piece to the full-circle employee well-being plan. When all the former pieces – that’s benefits strategy, administration, population health analytics and well-being complement each other, engagement is the final step. Keep your employees in mind – use technology, bring the solutions to them in easy to understand ways or try tools like gamification to engage them in every step of the process.
"At the end of the day, improving your company’s well-being needs to be about more than just taking 10,000 steps a day,” Jim Pritchett, DHS Group CEO, said. “Yes, the physical health aspect is a huge component, but when you combine benefits and well-being programs to engage employees to improve all aspects of their health and wellness, it’s not just something that benefits the employee, but makes an impact on the employer as well.”