Assess the Needs & Interests of Employees

      Before you can create and decide what type of program would work best for your company it is important to know what the needs and interests of your employees are.  The worksite wellness program isn't going to be very helpful if no one participates!  Therefore it is necessary to assess employee needs and interests with respect to worksite wellness programs.  Without doing this one could only expect low participation and little or no improvement in employee well-being and health.

Both Large Corporations and Small Businesses Will Need to Address the Following Questions:
    - Do the managers & supervisors buy-in to the idea of worksite wellness?
    - What do they see as the benefits to such a program?
    - What types of wellness activities and programs will they allow?
    - What is the employee interest in different types of programs?
          * Best times & places to schedule activities?
          * Organizational changes employees suggest to promote a healthier worksite environment?

      There are several types of wellness assessments that each provides valuable information to the committee to ensure the right type of program is initiated.  They each serve a separate need and are encouraged to ensure the success of the wellness program.
    Employee Interest Survey
      - It is important to remember that even though the business may make and save money on a worksite wellness program, it is for the employees.  Therefore, it's a great idea to find out first hand from them what will have the best chance of success.  This should be a simple survey consisting of just 10 or 12 questions.  Try to include:
             * What is the best mode for delivery?
                 ~ Email, bulletin boards, snail mail, flyers, memos, etc.
             * What aspects of wellness are they most interested in changing? 
                 ~ Nutrition, physical activity, tobacco, etc.
             * What activities would employees most likely participate in?
                ~ Walking, cooking, weight-loss challenges, tobacco cessation, etc.
             * Do any employees have expertise they could share to contribute to the program?  

    Health Risk Assessments (Health Risk Appraisal)
      - Health risk assessments are the core of health promotion programs for companies of all sizes.  They identify employee risk levels and serve as a baseline for which to compare the success of your worksite wellness program.  Health risk assessments point out the workforce's key issues and establish targets for improvement - through which the appropriate intervention is determined.
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