Can workplace learning create healthier employees? (2006)
This paper examines whether workplace wellness programs can actually improve employees’ health and wellbeing, while enhancing an organization’s bottom line. Specifically, the authors looked at innovative workplace health and safety practices in 12 Canadian firms, both large and small, in a variety of sectors.
They concluded that workplace health pays, noting that all the workplaces studied had seen improvements either in employee health indicators, workplace performance, or financial returns. Several organizations pointed to reduced workers’ compensation premiums.
All the workplaces were sufficiently convinced of the value of their programs to continue their workplace health activities.
The authors also identify the characteristics of effective workplace wellness programs, which include clear delineation of roles and responsibilities for employees and management; the establishment of well-defined objectives; consistent gathering of data to monitor progress; and the building in of audits and reviews to assess the effectiveness of programs.