In my experience in managing workplace wellbeing initiatives and consulting to clients with existing programs, I often see that evaluating wellbeing initiatives is often overlooked.
Why you might ask, is it often overlooked? Many organizations just don’t take the time to make a plan for it or evaluation is added as an afterthought.
When we talk about an evaluation plan, we are referring to a systematic way that you are going to measure the results of your initiative. So why do you want to evaluate? The easiest answer is because you want to know if your worksite wellness initiative is working. Or even better, because you want to know if the initiative is efficient, effective, and has impact.
There are two approaches you can use to evaluating your programs: Process Measures and Outcome Measures.
Process measures examine the steps taken and activities required for implementation.
- These measures include things such as participation, the response to activities and feelings that participants have about the program. Do employees like the way it is being delivered? Is the time of day convenient? Do they like the format? .
Outcome measures include changes to health risks, biometric measurements healthcare costs and productivity.
- Examples include changes to individual health status indicators such as blood pressure, Body mass index, or they can be measured in terms of organizational data such as Short Term Disability. Absenteeism, changes in workplace policies, or medical costs.
Evaluation needs to be built in along the way as you are implementing your programs. This is very helpful to have information on what is working, what is not working, and what needs to be changed. Then you can make mid course corrections to ensure high participation rates and overall program success.