More and more, companies are focusing on the well-being of their employees. Unsurprisingly, the pandemic has impacted the mental health of Canadians. Since COVID-19 has disrupted regular life, only 55% of people report having good or excellent mental health. Although some employers plan on investing the same amount as before in health and wellness programs (42%), many intend on spending even more (37%). As the needs rise, these programs will continue to see more investment—especially for highly valued and cost-effective benefits.
Wellness Trends and COVID-19
Health and wellness programs are far from new. They’re well engrained in workplace culture regardless of industry type and employees have come to expect them. Countless studies support their efficacy and employers see positive returns on investment, making them worthwhile. But COVID-19 has changed the landscape. For example, free healthy food/stocked kitchens, on-site fitness classes and gym membership reimbursement are downward trending. COVID-19 restrictions and public health measures make them unattractive or create too many access barriers. However, programs offering mental health, stress management and mindfulness tools are at the forefront of wellness initiatives. Though these have been growing in popularity in recent years, the unique challenges caused by COVID-19 have increased the demand for robust mental health solutions.
Gift Cards as Wellness Program Incentives
Gift cards are quite simply the best wellness incentive in a contactless world, since they’re easily purchased and distributed; plus, they’re loved by recipients. An impressive 70% of employees say they prefer receiving gift cards from employers. Since companies want to select useful gifts to operate successful wellness programs, they’re choosing the most convenient option—gift cards. They eliminate guesswork and provide quality, personalized gift experiences, regardless of quantity needed.
For example, employers can offer gift cards to support health and wellness initiatives by giving:
- fitness or sports retailer gift cards to outfit a home gym and creating virtual accountability groups
- experience gift cards to promote activity and help curb isolation
- grocery store gift cards and partnering up with dieticians to offer free healthy meal plans to staff
- bookstore gift cards and launching a virtual book club focused on mental health
- online retailer gift cards to purchase meditation cushions and journals and leading virtual guided meditation sessions
- health and beauty gift cards and developing monthly self-care calendars to share with staff
This year, it’s crucial to focus on collective recovery and place mental health at the forefront of workplace health and wellness programs. If you’re ready to stand out as a corporate leader, get started with us today. We’ll team up with you and develop a comprehensive approach to address all of your unique needs.