When many workplaces shifted to remote work in March 2020, businesses and organizations turned their attention to finding ways to keep their employees engaged and connected, and to support staff well-being. According to a nationwide survey on Employer-Sponsored Health and Well-Being conducted by Fidelity Investments, companies expanded their investment significantly in programs supporting mental and emotional health, work/life balance, and financial health in 2020.
HealthCare Access Maryland (HCAM) was no exception. We sought out new programs to help our 270 team members stay connected and healthy while teleworking. With a team dedicated to working every day to help Marylanders become healthier, it is important to ensure our staff are taking care of their own health needs. TriBridge Partners, a dedicated partner, supports HCAM and other organizations to find creative solutions addressing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on employees, their health and benefits.
With many platforms available to support employee motivation, team engagement, and employee wellbeing, Paul Younkins, Chief Innovation Officer and Founding Principal of TriBridge Partners, shares that businesses must develop a specific focus. Younkins says organizations should first consider the following introspective questions: “‘How do YOU currently measure engagement?,’ ‘How did you feel about engagement before the pandemic?.’ ‘How do you define employee engagement?,’ ‘What strategies have you used in the past that have been effective?’ And, ‘Could they be repurposed to a different work model?’”
Younkins also cautions organizations not to assume that employee engagement was at an optimal level prior to the pandemic. Starting with these questions can help to find long-term tools, methods, and resources to support creating healthy work environments with better engagement.
There are many new, innovative platforms designed to reward and provide meaningful lifestyle-related incentives and benefits to today’s multi-generational, diverse workforce. Younkins notes “Some of these lifestyle platforms have some really engaging user interface experiences that have really allowed clients to not only engage their onsite or remote workforce, but to do so in a way that truly meets their employees where they are. Implementing these solutions also delivers on many of our client’s initiatives to modernize and become more future ready – faster than anticipated merely 2 years ago.”
With support from TriBridge Partners, HCAM launched a new wellness and engagement platform to support our team. The platform allows HCAM to reward team members for their engagement, including incentives for getting the flu vaccine and celebrating work anniversaries. Team members receive special dollars that can be redeemed for an exclusive array of services geared toward supporting and rewarding our diverse staff. The new platform has been a great added benefit and value to our team.
As with implementing any new program or technology, challenges can arise. Younkins shares “I love a start-up! The challenges are typical – we often have a shoe-string budget, a limited number of promoters, yet unknown outcomes and no governance. All things that every start-up program has to overcome, of course.” However, the benefits are numerous. Younkins says of his clients, “It depends on the intention and use, but for the most part we are seeing over 90% engagement in the implemented platforms and lots of enthusiasm from teams.” Employee wellness platforms can be effective benefits as incentive tools, provide diverse rewards, and allow peers and leaders to praise and recognize their colleagues.
About TriBridge Partners:
TriBridge Partners is a regional advisory firm specializing in Human Capital Consulting, Health and Employee Benefits, Individual Insurance Planning, Financial Planning, and Business Enterprise Planning. Learn more.