Many companies offer employee benefits such as gym memberships and wellness programs over and above normal health care benefits. A key consideration is determining how can you support the health and wellness needs of those working remotely. Working remotely is more than a trend, it’s become a necessity to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. As more companies are seeing the benefits and cost-savings of having their workforce work remotely, it’s likely many companies will continue to allow their workers to continue to work remotely post COVID-19. These four wellness tips will help staff outside your home office feel as though they are fully included in your employee benefits.

Block Out Time to Support Their Health and Wellness Needs

Going from an office environment where employees had the support and mentorship of coworkers and managers to working remotely from home is a big adjustment. Block out time to support their health and wellness needs. For those remote workers who have children, they have the additional stress of homeschooling them. This takes their focus away from work trying to juggle both work and family at the same time. Supporting them by allowing them to take a mental health day, taking time out to go to an appointment or taking time for an afternoon nap due to exhaustion, are strategies that will not only support their mental health and well-being, but it’s also better for you as they will be more productive.  Schedule time daily or weekly to follow up with them either individually or in a group zoom meeting shows them that you care about their changing wellness needs. They will appreciate this support over and above the standard employee benefits they receive.

Provide Remote Staff With Resources That Promote Health and Wellness

Yes, the gyms might be closed for now however, you could set up a weekly newsletter promoting other options and include links to online yoga, meditation tapes, and online fitness programs. You could also provide them with a list of local walking trails in their area and encourage them to share photos of spectacular scenery encouraging their remote coworkers to do the same sot hey feel connected. Consider holding weekly challenges that support healthy eating, standing while working, or getting in 30 minutes of activity daily. You could provide them with a FitBit tracker to encourage them to keep up their activity. This also doesn’t just promote health; you’ll get your team engaging with each other comparing how many steps they did that day!

A simple newsletter or blog is all it takes to trigger a healthy lifestyle while working remotely from home. Apart from the obvious health benefits, all these ideas only cost a little of your time. It helps remote workers feel connected and encourages them to embark on a lifelong journey incorporating health and fitness into their daily routines if they aren’t already doing so.

Employee Benefits Should Include Remote Health Care Options

Working remotely means employees can no longer enjoy typical perks like free gym memberships, motivational workshops, or experience other wellness programs from the confines of their home. You can harness technology to overcome these challenges to boost engagement through virtual meeting boards and using social media platforms such as yammer to share additional benefits to remote workers. Providing consistent and positive messages helps to keep remote workers motivated which ultimately leads to improved efficiency and productivity.

Your remote staff may not be aware that many doctors are taking telecalls to assess minor health issues. You could schedule a virtual health and wellness session via video conferencing and invite a health and fitness coach to give a talk ending with a question and answer session. Better still, ask your employees how you can support them right now. As the restrictions ease from stay-at-home orders, you could provide your remote workers with a voucher for a massage or walk-in clinics for check-ups.

Encourage Ongoing Conversations About Employee Benefits

While employees depend on their employers for healthcare, mental health is an issue that still needs to be addressed. Most employer-sponsored health plans do not cover mental health to the degree that is needed. A wellness program should reflect a flexible approach where employees can address these concerns as they may differ substantially from your concerns. Now is the time to analyze if your employee benefits are right for you and right for your employees. You can download the 10 Step Checklist to Help Make Your New Employee’s First Week Great here. By broadening the definition of wellness, more employers are demonstrating their commitment to improving their employees’ lives. They are expanding their definition of wellness to include emotional and financial wellness, in addition to the traditional pillar of physical wellness.

Putting together an employee benefits package that will resonate with your employees can be confusing. The professionals at Innovative Broker Services are experts in this field which can save you time and money.  Contact them today at 916-932-2864 to get help analyzing if your employee benefits are attracting and retaining the best employees.