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How do Employee Wellness Programs Increase Workplace Productivity?

5 min read
Last Updated on 04 June, 2024

Did you know that presenteeism—where employees are physically at work but not fully functioning due to health issues—costs companies twice as much as absenteeism?

This issue is becoming more common in workplaces today. Many employees show up but can’t do their best work because they're not feeling well.

This problem doesn't just affect their work; it makes things harder for the whole company.

To solve this, many companies are starting employee wellness programs to help employees stay healthy and happy. These programs look at the main reasons why people come to work but can’t work well and try to fix those reasons. When employees feel better, they can do their best work.

Effective employee wellness programs are key to reducing presenteeism. They greatly improve workplace productivity by making sure employees are fully there, both in body and mind.

What's the True Cost of Presenteeism?


The true cost of presenteeism is significant but often overlooked in the workplace. Here are some straightforward points to understand its impact and solutions:

1. Cost Impact

Presenteeism can cost businesses two to three times more than direct healthcare expenses. Unlike medical bills, the costs from lost productivity aren't visible on financial statements and are difficult to track.

2. Reduced Efficiency

Employees who aren't fully productive contribute to lower overall workplace efficiency. This hidden cost is challenging to manage because it's not associated with direct payments, like those for healthcare.

3. Solution through Wellness

Implementing effective workplace wellness programs can help reduce presenteeism by improving employee health. These programs have been shown to enhance productivity and offer indirect financial benefits by tackling the underlying health issues that cause presenteeism.


1. Promotion of Wellness by Business Leaders

A study by the Health Enhancement Research Organization (HERO) reveals that over 90% of business leaders acknowledge a significant impact of wellness promotion on employee productivity and performance. They see productivity as the amount of work and performance as the quality of work. 47% prioritize performance over productivity.

2. Drivers of Productivity and Performance

Business leaders identify having the right tools as the primary driver of productivity. Whereas employee engagement is seen as crucial for enhancing performance.

3. Health as a Strategic Investment

Rather than merely a cost-saving measure, 57% of business leaders view health initiatives as a crucial investment in human capital and an integral part of their core business strategy. This approach is seen to achieve long-term benefits. Thus, it is not just a cost-saving measure but a way to improve corporate performance.

4. Diverse Views Among Leadership Levels

Executive leaders are more inclined than middle managers to view health as influential to performance. This disparity suggests that for health initiatives to be effective, they must be valued across all leadership levels. This should also be supported by conducive work environments.

How Employee Wellness Programs Increases Productivity?

Employee wellness programs help workers stay healthy and increase how much they get done at work. These programs use surveys and data to understand and improve employee's health and productivity.

1. Comprehensive Wellness Assessments

Healthways and Gallup created a tool called the Well-Being Assessment to understand how healthy employees are and how much work they can do. This tool asks employees about their health habits and problems, like smoking, eating, and exercising. It helps companies know what health issues their workers have and how these issues affect their work.

Different employees have different levels of productivity because of their health. The survey from Healthways found that bad health habits lead to less productivity. For example, employees who smoke or don't exercise enough are less productive. Also, those with health problems like high blood pressure or depression are not as productive.

3. Evidence Supporting Wellness Programs

Studies show that wellness programs that keep employees healthy can prevent them from losing productivity. For example, getting a flu shot is a simple way to avoid getting sick and losing productivity. However, some smaller companies are still unsure if these programs will really help.

It's hard to manage productivity if you can't measure it. But there are success stories from companies that show wellness programs do help. More companies are starting to see that these programs can keep employees healthy and more productive.

How to choose an Employee Wellness Program that Boosts Productivity?

1. Enhance Workplace Culture

Encourage teamwork by making your wellness events fun and about working together. Adding competitions and fitness games helps everyone stay excited and work better together.

2. Personalize the Wellness Program

Make the wellness program fit your company's unique style. Choose activities that everyone will enjoy, like step challenge or mindfulness sessions, using platforms like Vantage Fit. This makes the program more fun and useful for everyone.

3. Tools and Technology

Use easy tools to help organize work and keep track of projects. Apps that help with time management and teamwork can make work smoother. Encouraging everyone to use activity trackers or health apps can also keep them active and healthy.

4. Foster Team Building

Team activities are important. They not only keep everyone healthy but also help build strong friendships at work. Having team members who lead wellness activities can increase participation and make these programs more enjoyable and successful.

5. Recognize and Incentivize Efforts

It’s important to say thank you often. Simple things like notes, team dinners, or dress-down days can really show appreciation. Giving extras like more days off or flexible Monday mornings can motivate everyone to do their best.

These steps will help you choose a wellness program that everyone will want to join and that helps make work a better place.

Final Words

Implementing wellness initiatives not only enhances employee health but also boosts productivity and workplace efficiency. With evidence showing that healthier employees are more productive, it’s clear that wellness programs are not just beneficial but essential. They are strategic investments in human capital, crucial for long-term success.

So, don’t let health issues diminish your team's potential. Elevate productivity and transform your workplace culture with a tailored wellness program. Consider using Vantage Fit - an engaging and customizable employee wellness platform designed to fit your company's unique needs.

Start with Vantage Fit today and propel your team towards a healthier, more productive future! Act now and make wellness your competitive advantage.

This article is written by Ritushree R Singh, who is a content writer and marketer at Vantage Circle. Besides having a curious heart with an avid taste for music, she relishes traveling to new places and exploring different cultures whenever possible. To get in touch, reach out to editor@vantagecircle.com

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