Winter 2011 Report of Results from the Healthy Enterprise Study
As organizations tighten their belts, the costs associated with being a healthy enterprise tend to be subject to particular scrutiny. At the same time, the actions employers are forced to take in challenging times (i.e., downsizing, budget cuts), have a direct impact on the health of employees and the health of the overall culture. In this environment, Sibson Consulting conducted a Healthy Enterprise Study to both examine the business case for being a healthy enterprise and explore whether the nature and scope of employers' healthy enterprise efforts make a difference to their return on investment, as measured by savings.
This report summarizes the study findings, including the prevalence, duration and perceived effectiveness of programs associated with a healthy culture, and the relative importance of different initiatives on the key outcomes, such as health costs and turnover. Key study findings include the following:
- Strategic focus is important to program effectiveness.
- The benefits of investing in a healthy culture can be measured in terms of lower health care costs, turnover and absence.
- Strategies that focus on optimal behavior are most strongly correlated with more outcomes, including lower health care costs, turnover and absence.
The results of Sibson's Healthy Enterprise Study suggest that employers that want to become a healthy enterprise should consider developing a healthy enterprise strategy with dedicated leadership and an effective workplace, get employees and dependents to embrace the initiative, and measure outcomes.
Based on the study data on program offerings and reported effectiveness, Sibson created a Healthy Enterprise Index to compare organizations to one another. Sibson found that a higher index was associated with lower health care costs, health cost increases and turnover.