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You Can’t Manage What you Can’t Measure!

October 19, 2017

Yet  few  organizations report that they evaluate their wellness programs regularly. Without the scrutiny of evaluation and the measurement of outcomes, it is not possible to determine if program  goals and  Return on Investment ( ROI) are achieved.


So, what is measurement and evaluation?  Put simply , a program is evaluated through the measurement of identified goals or objectives. Common measurement outcomes include  employee  participation, engagement, satisfaction, improvements in health , ROI  and other  benefits  an organization may consider important. Some components of a wellness program should be evaluated on an ongoing basis, some yearly  and some every 2 years or longer. For example, Health Risk Assessments ( HRAs) should ideally be conducted yearly, while measuring participation may be on an ongoing  basis.


Measurement offers the following critical information:

–          Feedback for improvement; what works well , what needs to be improved and what else needs to be done?

–           Demonstration of value; does the program meet its goals?

–          Tracking progress; is participation increasing from year to year? are employees getting healthier?

–          Reports for accountability; are there reductions in absenteeism or health claims ?what about ROI?

–          Comparative data; what are the changes from year to year in  the organization’s health risk profile, sick leave etc. How does an organization compare with other organizations  in the same industry sector?


Before embarking on a wellness program, the essential first step is  knowing what kind of wellness issues are most common in the organization. So it is necessary to  gather baseline data on employee health that can  be compared with future assessments. These baseline data should include collection of biometrics such  as blood pressure, cholesterol, BMI and blood sugar together with a Health Risk Assessment  questionnaire.  Having  baseline  data on absenteeism and health care claims is also an excellent way to compare changes  as the wellness program is implemented  that will help   establish ROI.  Employee engagement    is a critical  success factor and measuring participation rates is a clear and relatively easy way to determine engagement.


So measurement is the compass that guides successful workplace wellness and ensures its sustainability as part of the business culture.


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