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Advertorial – Developing Fit and Healthy Employees

How an active workforce delivers sustainable workplace productivity

Apr 1, 2014

by Michael F. Boyce, Vice President of Business Development for GoodLife Fitness

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Canadian organizations are becoming increasingly aware of the need to address issues related to the physical health and mental well-being of their employees. Research illustrating the relationship between healthy employees and a productive workforce is at the forefront today and provides critical information for organizations that want a competitive edge. For example, a recent study by the Sun Life Institute™ reported that 97% of organizations feel employee health influences overall corporate performance.

Recognizing the Benefits

One of the most compelling benefits for organizations that invest in a strategic wellness program is the overall long-term cost savings. It is well known that unhealthy and disengaged employees can be very costly to an organization when you consider repercussions such as extended leave of absence due to illness, decreased productivity, and decreased efficiencies due to sick time or illness.

“Many Canadians spend eight or nine hours a day sitting at their desks and leading sedentary lifestyles, and it’s affecting their personal health and the fiscal health of their employers,” said GoodLife Fitness Founder and CEO David “Patch” Patchell-Evans.

With a healthy and active workforce, Canadian companies will be able to minimize financial losses attributed to unhealthy employees, increase employee morale and boost productivity.

Companies with strategic wellness plans experience immediate cost-saving efficiencies. For example, according to findings from the 2013 Sun Life Ivey Corporate Wellness ROI Study, wellness programs save employers 1.5-1.7 day’s absenteeism or $251 per employee per year. In the same study, companies with wellness plans reported:

  • 40% reduced absenteeism
  • 30% improved productivity
  • 18% fewer disability claims

Create a Culture of Engagement

Employee engagement and happiness is more than delivering a rewards program, it’s about influencing behaviour and creating a culture of engagement. According to the 2011 Buffett National Wellness Survey only 14% of Canadians report using gym memberships, however greater than 33% of Canadian employees participate in their corporate fitness programs.

A great opportunity exists for corporate Canada as the same study reports 75% of organizations currently do not have a strategic wellness plan in place.

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Seek Innovative Wellness Solutions

Human Resource and Health & Wellness professionals face key challenges when trying to implement organizational change & wellness plans. Some of the most common challenges are:

  • Identifying best practices that can be implemented regardless of organizational size and budget
  • Achieving buy-in from senior leadership teams to invest in employee health and mental well-being
  • Engaging employees to utilize services provided by employers

“At GoodLife, we are committed to providing opportunities and solutions for all Canadians to get moving and active,” said David Patchell-Evans. “We know that organizations and companies play a critical role in helping their employees live healthy and happy lives. Through initiatives like our Health & Wellness Leadership Summit and the variety of offerings available through our Workplace Wellness division, we are providing the expertise and tools to corporate Canada to transform their workforce and drastically impact their productivity, results and ultimately their bottom line.”

GoodLife Fitness’ Corporate Wellness Team assesses organizations and prescribes, then delivers the best wellness program possible for staff requirements. Some of the GoodLife Fitness workplace wellness services include web-based wellness challenges, educational workshops, energy and stretch breaks, health screening, flu immunization, nutritional counseling, meditation, monthly fitness and health tips, as well as walking programs and pedometers. GoodLife Fitness programs include corporate fitness memberships with access to over 300 clubs across Canada as well as fitness programming that is delivered right to your workplace.

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The annual GoodLife Fitness Health & Wellness Leadership Summit delivers a platform for leaders to gather and obtain valuable insights as a means to address challenges they face in the areas of employee development and engagement.

The Summit provides organizations with educational tools to develop fit, healthy, happy and engaged employees and allows for an interactive environment for professionals to be inspired, educated and entertained by a roster of world-class speakers, authors and champions for positive change.

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Presented annually at the Summit in Toronto, The GoodLife Fitness Health & Wellness Leadership Award is open to all organizations in Canada regardless of industry or size, recognizes four aspects of workplace wellness programs – Leadership, Culture & Engagement, Rewards & Recognition, and Personal Growth – and celebrates organizational initiatives across all sectors and sizes so others may learn and integrate innovative practices so Canadians are healthier and more-productive. “Our goal is to recognize organizations that are investing in the health, fitness and well-being of their employees,” said David Patchell-Evans.

The GoodLife Fitness Health & Wellness Leadership Summit is coming to Calgary on Thursday, May 12th and Toronto on November 4th. Learn how to develop your healthy & fit workforce with tips from several guest speakers including, David Patchell-Evans, GoodLife Fitness Founder & CEO. Click here to learn more.

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