“Health is a state of body, wellness is a state of being- J. Stanford”
Indeed, health is important to live a successful life. However, various organizations are also introducing wellness plans in their rulebook. Every company ensures the workplace health and wellness of its employees. It introduces new policies and plans to attain well-being in the organization.
Well, we are already aware of these two terms “wellness and health”, the real question arises what do they really mean? These two words are often used as synonyms but actually are different. Of course, the two concepts go hand-in-hand but they don’t refer to the same thing at all.
While executing and communicating with benefits administration software for employee benefits programs, people overlap it with health. It is imperative to know the differences between workplace Health and Wellness and the factors that differentiate the one with the other.
Wellness is the action that we do to achieve health and health is the outcome of practicing wellness. We all are familiar with the latter concept but the former concept is relatively new and has been introduced in offices and organizations in the past few years. Health is a mere part of wellness benefits plans implemented in workplaces and focuses on physical wellness.
On the other hand, wellness is a wider term that covers everything from job satisfaction to financial incentives to smooth interaction and ensure the better physical and mental health of employees. The primary motto behind wellness programs in offices is preventive care which is essential to save the interests & money of policyholders and employers in the long run.
The idea is that when employees have regular medical checkups, flexible working environment, and healthy surroundings, they will be a less expensive asset to the company. Moreover, they will feel valued and an important part of the organization, hence, boosting productivity and quality of work.
Now that you are acquainted with the two concepts, let’s dive deeper to differentiate them accurately and precisely. Here we go:
Let’s start with the official definition of Health as given by the World Health Organization.
“Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
We can say that it talks about much more than physical ailment and includes social and emotional fitness too. It refers to the state when a person is free from any disease and to ensure the same, companies come up with schemes and plans under employee benefits administration that keep a regular check on employees’ health.
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Employers organize medical camps that include physical activities, promote a healthy diet and more. The main determinants of physical and mental fitness are employees’ behavior and characteristics without any discrimination on the basis of religion, race, political beliefs, social or economic status.
The reason that employers pay the utmost attention to their members’ health is twofold. It not only reduces absenteeism but also produces better results. When office workers feel valued and are taken care of, they tend to put in their best efforts to attain organizational goals. Not only this, but Online payroll services are HR professionals to automate their payroll work along with other major organizational workflow.
World Health Organization defines Wellness as,
“The optimal state of healthy individuals and groups” and is also expressed as “a positive approach to living.”
Wellness is more about the way of living, the lifestyle of people to attain one’s fullest potential and better health conditions. It comprises eight components; environmental, social, physical, financial, intellectual, occupational, spiritual and emotional.
When companies introduce wellness programs, they not only focus on the illness-free environment but also on the dynamic process of growth. Simply put, if health is your goal, then wellness is the way to attain it. That is what employers do. They ensure the right balance between all the aspects of life.
Employers and employees work jointly to blend all the dimensions in the correct amount. For this, companies that have adopted comprehensive HRIS software for small business are also there to keep an eye on these factors and also deliver the appropriate benefits solutions.
The wellness programs introduced in organizations deal with disease prevention, health assessment, and various other efforts to create a satisfactory working environment.
Wellness at the Workplace
There is no denying the fact that understanding the differences between wellness and health is important for employers. It helps them to implement effective plans to employees and also to communicate the schemes with them smoothly. Of course, no office member would like to compromise with their health but lack of understanding and engagement is the stumbling block to their involvement.
If guided and educated well by HR and employers, employees would certainly take an active part in the employee benefits solutions and would even contribute to making them work efficiently within the company.
They can organize sessions to educate them on healthy eating & lifestyle, convey the importance of breaks, sports and more. The lower health risks for employees, the better it is for companies. The shift toward wellness will result in higher productivity and retention rate which is the final aim of every employer. But wait, have you heard of succession planning software? We will discuss about this later!
Well-being expands a bit further and covers wellness, health along with other significant factors. To state in simple words, well-being is a state of happiness, good health, and fulfillment where a person feels content with his professional life.
With emotional, mental and physical well-being, an employee performs to the best of his abilities and gives the maximum result to the company. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention describes well-being as
“Well-being integrates mental health (mind) and physical health (body) resulting in more holistic approaches to disease prevention and health promotion.”
When companies shape a well-being program for the workers, they make sure that employees get monetary and non-monetary benefits and also cover fitness, work stress, eating habits, smooth communication, insurance plans, etc. This is attained through different HCM tools that manage health and also offer insurance plans to secure their future.
The best representation of employee well-being is Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.
The lowest two stages, i.e., Physiological and safety needs demonstrate wellness. Once the employees seek these two phases, they move forward to achieve psychological and self-fulfillment needs. These stages include:
- Sense of community with better interaction within the organization.
- Friendly environment for the employees, so they feel comfortable and welcomed in the office.
- Seek self-respect, fame, and glory for his accomplishments.
- Feel proud and rewarded for the excellent work in the field.
- Exploits their capabilities and potential to reach the highest level.
- The need to become what one is capable of.
Best Methods To Drive Better Employee Health At Workplace
As you have come far and also understood the difference between workplace health and wellness, it’s time to discuss the great ways to implement them into our workplace. In the next section, we will share the effective methods to encourage better employee health.
Develop a Smoking Free Workplace
According to the forecast from CDC, “Worldwide, tobacco use causes more than 7 million deaths per year. If the pattern of smoking all over the globe doesn’t change, more than 8 million people a year will die from diseases related to tobacco use by 2030.”
Hence, it is important that employees at the workplace could try to reduce the dose of tobacco and smoking. For this, there are few parameters that you can introduce between your employees.
- You can start by creating smoke free premises policies.
- Start encouraging your employees about “Quit Smoking Programs” and simultaneously arrange a seminar for better understanding.
- Many times, people don’t want to talk about their smoking habits, employers should recognize and aware their employees to talk with medical professionals.
Say NO To Long Chair Time
According to research, sitting for a longer period of time may welcome various underlying diseases. Sitting for a longer time can welcome risk of heart attack and dementia. Hence, as per the facts from “Pennington Biomedical Research Center” more than 18,000 people in America sit most of the day and are vulnerable to heart attacks. Hence, many recognized health and wellness websites, including Webmd have shared the drawbacks of ensconcing. You can follow some below methods to prevent this situation at your company.
- Encourage your employees to start taking breaks during their work time. It will help them to move from one block to another.
- You can also invite experts to review or change the ergonomic environment.
- You can also introduce 10 minute stretch program for your employees to enhance efficiency.
Some Other Method To Encourage Better Workplace Health And Wellness Are:
- Start with medical check-up drives for your employees regarding common and seasonal health issues.
- Fresh fruits and veggies are a good source of nutrients and they can also help you to feel better and lighter. Hence, having a bowl of fruits at your workplace will surely elevate a positive environment and your employee would be able to perform better.
- Employers can also dedicate a day for physical health such as arranging a track, yoga classes or other fitness programs.
Now we are sure that you have understood the difference between health and wellness and also acquired knowledge of well-being which is the final goal of every wellness program in organizations. Honestly, these concepts are a constant work in progress and employers have to work daily to achieve them.
Once they realize the importance of health, wellness, and well-being in their company, we are certain that they will be able to exploit the full potential of employees. As we said earlier,
“The more wellness opportunities for employees, the higher job satisfaction and wellbeing.”
But don’t forget to check the best talent management software to ensure overall success for your organization.