Why Complete a Employee Wellness Plan Environment Assessment?
The purpose of completing the assessment is to establish your worksite’s strengths
and areas in need of improvement. The assessment will lead your workgroup to
recommend actions for changes to make the worksite more supportive of healthy
behaviors (i.e. healthy food choices in snack machines, policies to enforce
no tobacco use on worksite grounds or encouraging walking during break times).
You may find some of the actions for supporting healthy behaviors are easy to
do and others may not be feasible or efficient in your worksite. The assessment
results can also be used as a baseline measure for evaluation. The initial assessment
can later be compared with a follow-up assessment several months later to note
Who should do the Employee Wellness Plan Environment Assessment?
Establish a workgroup (at least 4-5 employees) who will be responsible for
completing the assessment. This may be a subset of your wellness workgroup.
Forming a diverse group from all areas and levels of your corporation is important
for meaningful assessment and successful planning and implementation. Suggested
members include: human resources, employees from various departments, administrators,
supervisors, staff member or wellness staff.
When should the Employee Wellness Plan Environment Assessment be Done?
Use the assessment as a starting point for your Employee Wellness Program.
Once you have completed the assessment, determine which areas the workgroup
will focus on (i.e. healthy eating, physical activity, general health, etc.).
Create a time for the workgroup to meet and monitor the progress. Also determine
a schedule for annual assessments, so that the assessment can serve as a tool
for continuous improvement and accountability over time.
Part 1 – Employee Wellness Plan Assessment Checklist
Complete a Worksite Wellness Assessment Checklist to determine what wellness
components you currently have at your worksite. This can be done with the full
workgroup or you may want a few key personnel (such as the Human Resources lead,
Wellness Coordinator or Workgroup Coordinator) to do a preliminary scan based
on information they gather and then let the full workgroup react to their findings.
Ask your broker for a sample wellness assessment checklist or create your own.
Completion of the checklist provides a reference point of the wellness functions
that are currently in place or in process and it provides an overview of some
of the items that should be considered for a comprehensive Employee Wellness
Employee Wellness Plan Checklist Components:
Categories. There are six major categories (General, Physical Activity, Nutrition,
Health Screening, Tobacco Use and Emergency Response Plan). Each category has
several questions that address what you currently have in place at your worksite.
Current Status. Initially, list whether you have the component (Yes), are in
the process of instituting the component or you are planning for the component
(In Process) or don’t have the component at all (No). At the end of each
category, sub-total the number in each column and then total all of the categories
at the end of the checklist to get an overview of where your worksite Employee
Wellness Plan currently rates. You should also use this baseline measure as
a benchmark for later evaluation. By evaluating where your worksite is on each
wellness component, you will be able to get a general idea of your status across
each category and all 57 items.
Potential Priorities. After you have completed the assessment and the employee
interest survey, you can use the potential priority column to indicate what
components you might want to focus on that are either currently in process or
don’t exist. This can serve as a first testing of possible areas to focus
on as you develop your action plan.
Part 2: staff member Input
Why would we want to do an employee survey?
You should conduct an employee survey to get a better understanding of your
target audience (your corporation’s employees) and get an initial idea
of their current health habits and interest areas. The survey can be tailored
to your worksite and can be done in paper form or through the use of survey
instruments on the internet or that can be purchased. You can create your own
employee survey or ask your broker for a Workplace Wellness Needs and Interest
As was the case with the worksite environmental assessment, the employee survey
results can also be used as a baseline measure for later evaluation. The initial
survey results can later be compared with a follow-up survey several months
later to note progress.
You should also consider engaging employees in focus groups or informal interviews
to gather information on their wants and needs. This can be done either before
or after the survey, or if you don’t have the resources to survey employees,
you could use this method to gather information in place of the survey.
Whatever method you use to gather information, make it as easy as possible
for employees to complete and submit the information so you get a high return
rate. Consider offering an incentive or prize for employees who complete the