A workplace wellness program is something which many companies, both large and small, are implementing today — but for the company, and in particular the HR department which will be administering the program, what are the benefits?

As the technology has advanced in recent years, wearables have become a key component of any workplace wellness program. Not only do fitness trackers and smartwatches, along with smartphones, allow users to collect a large amount of data about everything they do throughout the day and night, but the advances in how that data is analyzed now give both users and their company insights into how they could improve their well-being.

If you are unsure about whether implementing a wellness program is right for your workplace, here are five benefits to consider:

1. Healthier Employees

One of the simplest yet most important reasons to implement a wellness program is the fact that it will make your employees healthier. Beyond the financial and performance benefits you gain as a company, the health of your employees should be something which takes priority over everything else.

With obesity in America reaching an all-time high, companies need to play their part in trying to promote a healthier and more active lifestyle — and a workplace wellness program can do just that.

2. More Productive Employees

One of the advantages of having healthier and more active employees is that they perform better. A study from the University of California found employees who participated in an employer-sponsored health program increased their productivity by an average of four percent during the subsequent year.

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In addition to healthier employees being more productive, they are also at work more often, as these programs typically lead to less absenteeism. Sick leave can be challenging and costly for companies, and any efforts that can reduce the number of sick days employees take each year helps the bottom line.

3. Happier Employees

Healthier employees are happier employees. Boosting team morale is a major benefit of implementing a corporate wellness program. At companies where teamwork is critical, having happy employees who enjoy coming to work and are energized to work well with their colleagues is critical.

Research from the University of Sheffield found that companies are stifling employee happiness rather than encouraging it. However, a study conducted by health and performance experts Global Corporate Challenge — which surveyed employees from 500 organizations in 70 countries — found that happy employees are high-performing employees. By implementing a corporate wellness program, you can make your employees happier — and happier to come to work.

4. Decreased Healthcare Costs

Beyond the benefits to employees, workplace wellness programs can significantly decrease the amount companies pay for their healthcare. There are many insurance companies who are offering the opportunity to reduce costs for companies who are giving employees wearables like fitness trackers and smartwatches in order to encourage their workforce to be more active.

By using the huge amount of data collected by these devices, healthcare providers can offer reduced premiums to employers who are actively trying to encourage a healthier lifestyle among their employees.

5. Gamified Missions

By leveraging the inherently social aspect of fitness trackers, employers can create a friendly atmosphere at work where teams or individuals compete against each other in a series of fun, informal challenges. Whether it’s who climbed the most stairs in a single week, or who has accumulated the most steps in a month, these challenges can not only promote company loyalty, but also engender teamwork and cooperation.

In a world where wearables are becoming more affordable while also offering increased insights, the barriers to introducing a corporate wellness program are decreasing. With a combination of healthier, happier and more productive employees along with lower corporate healthcare costs, the benefits are clear.

From healthcare to hospitality, see how wearables can transform the workplace.

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David Gilbert

David Gilbert specializes in covering the global smartphone industry and the dangerous world of cybercrime. David previously served as European technology editor at the International Business Times, and as Technology Editor for the UK edition of IBTimes for over three-and-a-half years, where he earned the prestigious Digital Writer of the Year award at the Online Media Awards in 2013.

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