Several years ago, the Village of Algonquin identified the need to take their wellness program to the next level. Participation and engagement among its employees was severely lacking. By closely assessing their program and identifying obstacles, they knew they had to offer a more robust program and create a culture of health to get employee buy-in and make the program successful. Todd Walker, Director of Human Resources at Village of Algonquin tells the story.

How the Village of Algonquin does it

Prior to working with Interactive Health, we were really struggling to get employees involved in our wellness program. It’s not unusual for there to be some skepticism about potential advantages a wellness program can deliver. Initially our employees were very resistant, and as a result, our participation rate was only 18% in our first year.

The wellness program we were offering was very basic and we knew that if we wanted to get employees on board, we’d need to offer a more robust, comprehensive program. With the support of Interactive Health, we assessed our program and identified and overcame a number of obstacles. This strategic approach resulted in a jump in participation to 85% the next year.

How did we do it? There are a few factors that have made it so successful:

  1. Roll-Out – Having a multi-channel communication approach was key to raising awareness about our wellness program. We used proven member marketing tools such as flyers, FAQs, posters, and intranet postings to communicate the value of health evaluations. In addition, we conducted three onsite program roll-out meetings to inform employees about the program and respond to questions.

 

  1. Incentive Strategy – In order to engage employees and increase participation, we decided to offer an incentive tied to the benefit plan if an employee achieves a certain number of points. We also offer a paid day off for employees who reach our highest incentive tier.

 

  1. Culture of Wellness – We placed a huge emphasis on creating an environment to support wellness. Top-down support from management was key, and our Wellness Committee – made up of police officers, public works representatives, administrative staff – played a key role in creating a culture of change. We also budgeted $40,000 to build an onsite gym and approved the committee’s suggestion to install juicing machines at locations, as well as plant fruit trees on site.

Implementation of a meaningful incentive, in addition to the communication efforts and creating a culture of wellness were key to increasing employee participation. If any of these factors were absent from the equation, the outcome would have been drastically different.

 

To learn more about Interactive Health’s services, please email learnmore@interactivehealthinc.com. The account is monitored Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT.

 

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