Key Responsibilities for Company Wellness Leaders December 1st, 2010, by Ken Buckley

Last week we talked about establishing a wellness committee to ensure a successful and efficient workplace health program. As promised, today we’ll be following up with some of the key responsibilities that should be delegated amongst members of the wellness team to make sure all aspects of the health program are smoothly executed.

I mentioned in my last post that smaller businesses with scaled down programs may prefer to appoint just one member of staff to oversee company health initiatives and be a ‘wellness leader’. Either way, job descriptions for these key wellness leaders should include management of some of the following important tasks.

Health Program ‘Individual Interest’ Surveys

Having a member of the wellness committee administer an ‘Individual Interest’ survey is a great addition to conventional data as it gauges employee interest in health and wellness activities. The benefit of this is twofold: firstly it gives insight into which activities are most likely to maximise employee participation, and secondly, employees are more likely to participate in initiatives when they know their input has been taken on board.

Administration of Electronic Health Risk Appraisals

Electronic HRAs (Health Risk Appraisals) are another great way of gathering employee health data. They are simple to administer and consist of a 10-15 minute online questionnaire covering a range of workplace wellness issues such as smoking, stress management, physical exercise, diet and work productivity.

Administration of the Onsite Health Expo

Due to its importance, maximising employee participation in the onsite health expo is a crucial role to be taken on by one or more members of the wellness committee. Initially, the health expo is often the high energy launch of a health program, starting off the program with a bang and creating momentum for the initiatives to come.

In subsequent years, an annual health expo reinvigorates programs and helps get employees back on track by repeating biometric screenings and measuring improvement. A highly visible marketing campaign should be established from the get go, ensuring all staff members know where and when the event is taking place and that they are cordially invited.

Other important responsibilities that should be delegated amongst wellness committee members include:

• The implementation of healthy changes to the company environment, for instance the establishment of onsite fitness facilities such as a corporate gym.

• The implementation of healthy changes to company policies, such as a tobacco free workplace policy, or a healthy catering policy.

• Administration of incentive-based campaigns, including marketing and a person to be the ‘go to’ for employees who may have questions.

• Organisation of onsite health seminars or one-on-one consultation sessions with health professionals such as dieticians, life coaches, naturopaths and so on.

• Establishment of a wellness resource room or area where employees have access to wellness magazines and pamphlets on health strategies to meet challenges they may be facing.

• Publishing and circulation of a quarterly company health newsletter that promotes upcoming events as well as tips on health management.

Of course this is by no means an exhaustive list, and your corporate health program provider can work on tailoring initiatives with the wellness committee to keep efforts focused and results oriented for better health and productivity within your unique organisation.

For more information on Workplace Health Programs, contact Healthworks on 1300 90 10 90 (International: IDD 61-2-9954-1888 ) and be sure to quote: “post871” for eligibility of Healthworks latest online offers and Corporate Health initiatives.

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