Health is Wealth: How Data Can Help Decrease Your Benefits Spend

Health is Wealth: How Data Can Help Decrease Your Benefits Spend

When companies invest in employee health and wellness, they invest in their organization’s overall performance. After all, healthy employees are more productive and less likely to call out of work. But providing benefits comes with a hefty price tag. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2021 employee healthcare costs made up about 7.8 percent of a company’s annual operating budget, which translates to over $8,000 per covered employee.

Because of this, many employers offer health and wellness programs to their employees to curb their benefits spending. The goal of health and wellness programs is to promote healthier lifestyles to employees so that they’re less likely to develop health conditions that drive up claims. When implemented correctly, these programs can also help decrease absenteeism and increase overall morale.

To make it a worthwhile investment, employers should leverage data to measure the efficacy of their offerings and make adjustments to health and wellness offerings based on the employee population’s needs. Data analytics empower employers to understand the health needs of their unique employee population, as well as what’s driving their benefit costs. Personalizing offerings help organizations develop targeted initiatives to assist with driving down costs and improving health outcomes.

Though there are many factors to account for in the data collection process, your approach should evaluate these three areas of a health and wellness program:

Structure

This is where you assess the foundational footprint of the wellness program.

  • What are the elements of the program?
  • Is leadership supportive of it?
  • How is the workplace environment supportive of the initiative?
  • What’s your employee engagement strategy?
  • How does the program stack up against the HERO scorecard?

Process

Here, you measure how well the program is run and implemented.

  • Did the implementation run on time and as planned?
  • What (if any) barriers did you encounter?
  • How successful was your employee communication strategy?
  • Did people engage with the program?

Outcomes

Analyze the impact your programs had on your employees’ health, as well as healthcare utilization and costs.

  • Are employees registering for the program?
  • Are you seeing the changes your program was designed to target? (weight loss, blood pressure reduction, etc.)
  • Have people completed their health screenings?
  • Do you see a difference in absenteeism, productivity, and turnover rates?
  • What does participant feedback look like?

Data informs nearly every decision a business makes, and employee health and benefits shouldn’t be the exception considering the expense. A properly designed health and wellness strategy is data-driven, though rolling out a program and measuring its success can be difficult without the proper tools and guidance.

Connect with our benefits team today to determine how you can harness the power of data to implement a wellness and benefits strategy that works.

DISCLAIMER

This material has been prepared for informational purposes only and was generated from information provided to BKS from the client and/or third-party sources. Therefore, BKS makes no warranty or representation(s) as to the accuracy or appropriateness of the data and/or the analysis herein. This information is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal, or accounting advice. You should consult your tax, legal, and accounting advisors for those services.

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