|[January 30, 2013]
Americans See Real Rewards from Workplace Wellness Programs
DES MOINES, Iowa --(Business Wire)--
More American workers recognize the rewards of participating in
workplace wellness programs, according to the latest Principal
Financial Well-Being IndexSM: American Workers. Sixty-two
percent of workers, up from 55 percent 2011, believe workplace wellness
activities are successful in improving health and reducing health risks.
The index, which surveys American workers at growing businesses with
10-1,000 workers1, is released by the Principal Financial
Group® and conducted by Harris Interactive (News - Alert)®. These findings
focusing specifically on wellness attitudes and
behaviors among American workers were taken from the fourth quarter 2012
By taking advantage of workplace wellness offerings, American employees
are approaching their work with more energy and motivation. Fifty-one
percent of program participants feel wellness benefits encourage them to
work harder and perform better, and another 59 percent of program
participants say they have more energy to be productive at work as a
result of their participation in employer-sponsored wellness programs.
"As wellness programs become more established in the workplace, we are
seeing a growing number of employees appreciate - and expect - that
their employer offers these benefits," said Lee Dukes, president of
Principal Wellness Company, a subsidiary of the Principal Financial
Group. "In the wake of the financial crisis, which has left many
companies stretched thin, maintaining a productive workforce is a
priority for organizations."
Nearly half (45 percent) of employees agree that an employer-sponsored
wellness program would encourage them to stay in their current
employment situation, up from 40 percent 2011. Additionally, 43 percent
of participants say wellness programs have led them to miss fewer days
of work, up eight percent from 2011. Despite the apparent benefits,
about a third (34 percent) of workers still do not participate in any of
the wellness programs offered by their employers.
Employer Incentives on the Rise
As wellness programs become more popular, employers are offering a
variety of ways to encourage employees to participate. The survey shows
the top three ways employees are encouraged by their employers to
participate in wellness prorams are: encouragement by management (20
percent), lower health insurance costs to those who participate (20
percent), or allotted time for participation during the workday (20
percent, up from 9 percent). Only a little more than a third (36
percent) say their employers do not offer any encouragement to
participate in wellness benefits, a significant divergence from the
previous three years, when about half of participants said their
employer did nothing to encourage wellness program participation.
Participants also cited an increase in the following employer incentives:
Seventeen percent, up from 9 percent the previous year, say their
employer offers contributions into a health savings account or health
Sixteen percent, up from 12 percent the previous year, say their
employer provides other financial incentives such as gift certificates
or discounts for those who participate;
And 10 percent, up from 6 percent the previous year, report that their
employer rewards additional paid time off from work to participants.
"It's in every employer's interest to have healthier, happier, more
productive employees," said Dukes. "Employers have to do more than offer
wellness programs; in order to see the benefits, they have to incent
For more news and insights from The Principal®, connect with
us on Twitter (News - Alert) at: http://twitter.com/ThePrincipal.
Financial Well-Being Index SM survey was conducted online
within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of the
Principal Financial Group® between October 30 and November 7,
2012 among 1,103 employees.
This is one in a series of quarterly studies to identify and track
changes in the workplace of small and mid-sized (growing) businesses.
The first Principal Financial Well-Being IndexSM survey was
conducted in the United States in 2000.
About the Principal Financial Group
The Principal Financial
Group® (The Principal ®)1 is
a global investment management leader offering retirement services,
insurance solutions and asset management. The Principal offers
businesses, individuals and institutional clients a wide range of
financial products and services through its diverse family of companies.
Founded in 1879 and a member of the FORTUNE 500®, the
Principal Financial Group has $392.2 billion in assets under management2 and
serves some 18.3 million customers worldwide from offices in Asia,
Australia, Europe, Latin America and the United States. Principal
Financial Group, Inc. is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the
ticker symbol PFG. For more information, visit www.principal.com.
About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the
world's leading market research firms, leveraging research, technology,
and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable
foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll®
and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris
offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer
insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing,
advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris
possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care,
technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial
services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package
goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings
that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's
research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries and
territories through our North American and European offices, Harris
specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our
clients-stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.
1 "The Principal Financial Group" and "The Principal" are
registered service marks of Principal Financial Services, Inc., a member
of the Principal Financial Group.
2 As of September 30, 2012.
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