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Perks of Offering Wellness Benefits

"Customers will never love a company until the employees love it first." This quote from Simon Sinek is demonstrated consistently by successful companies and is true for businesses both large and small. When business owners take care of their employees, employees will take care of the company and everyone benefits‐customers, employees and the business itself.

A great place to start is employee benefits. A 2023 study from LIMRA (Life Insurance Marketing and Research Association) asked employees to list the benefits they are currently seeking. The most popular benefits they named include medical insurance, dental and vision coverage, life insurance, paid family or medical leave, and health wellness programs.1

"Health wellness" is a broad term and may include insurance wellness benefits or employer-sponsored wellness programs.

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What are wellness benefits?

When provided through voluntary insurance, wellness benefits are often available as optional riders. They may include coverage to help pay for preventive care, mental health care, financial wellness, or other areas that help employees maintain a healthy lifestyle.

For example, an insurance carrier may offer a preventive care wellness rider that helps pay for immunizations or health screenings for early detection of illnesses. These do not impact an employer's bottom line since they are sponsored by employers but paid for by employees.

Employers may also offer their own wellness benefits to employees in the form of fitness programs, gym memberships, financial education, smoking cessation assistance, flexible time off and so on. These programs are sponsored and paid for by employers.

Whether they are provided through an insurer or an employer, wellness benefits can save money over time by preventing even bigger costs down the road and creating a healthy, engaged workforce. Here are just some of the perks for both employers and employees.

For employers: Improved attendance and morale

When employees feel connected to their work, their coworkers and their employer, everyone wins.

Employee absenteeism, or the habitual absence from work, may be due to a variety of factors, including burnout, stress, mental health issues or chronic illnesses. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 7.8 million workers missed work due to illness, injury or medical problems in January 2022. That is a 110% increase from 3.7 million absent workers in January 2021. These employee absences add up, costing billions of dollars in lost productivity each year.2

Attendance can be improved when wellness benefits are available, empowering employees to be engaged with others at work, seek out a doctor for illnesses, get help from a mental health professional, and feel supported on their health care journey. When employees feel connected to their work, their coworkers and their employer, everyone wins.

For employers: More tools to attract talent

Beyond a competitive salary, prospective employees are interested in seeing what other benefits a company has to offer. Research shows that many job candidates include wellness programs on the list of features that are extremely important to them.

The LIMRA study also found that employees are more interested in physical health wellness programs than other benefits like career development or tuition assistance.1 By offering wellness perks in the form of insurance benefits and company programs, employers are increasing their appeal to job candidates as well as giving current employees what they want.

For employees: Improved health and happiness

By inspiring employees to maintain healthy habits, employers can help their workforce reduce prolonged stress that affects productivity and morale, lower the risk of long-term health problems, and feel better at work both mentally and physically.

For instance, Lincoln Industries implemented a workplace wellness program that included annual biometric screenings, a smoke-free campus, emotional wellness assistance and other measures. After 12 years, the program produced a 3-to-1 return on investment, including a drop in health care costs and employee tobacco use as well as a boost in employee metabolic health.3

For employees: Reduced health care costs

In 2024, health care costs for American workers are expected to increase by 5.4%, and people are already feeling a big pinch.4 By offering voluntary benefit coverage with additional wellness benefits, employers can help employees prevent unforeseen medical emergencies along with the resulting medical bills.

For example, John has voluntary insurance through his employer with wellness benefits to help pay for health screenings. His doctor advises him to undergo a colonoscopy due to a family history of cancer. During the procedure, his doctor removes some benign polyps that could have potentially developed into something more serious if they had remained undetected.

John receives a cash benefit to help cover the cost of the procedure. He can rest easier knowing that he prevented a medical emergency by being proactive and avoiding the high costs associated with colon cancer.

Wellness Benefits from Allstate Benefits

Allstate Benefits offers a variety of wellness benefit riders that pay covered insureds to stay healthy! Enrolled employees and their covered family members can receive cash benefits for eligible exams, health screenings and vaccinations. Certain coverage options may also include benefits for alcohol or tobacco cessation programs, weight management programs, online health assessments, financial wellness programs, and more.

Optional riders may be offered to employees with select group products, including Critical Illness Insurance, Accident Insurance, Cancer Insurance and Hospital Indemnity Insurance.

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