Published in Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

Author(s): Augustine S. Rajaratnam, MS; Lindsay E. Sears, PhD; Yuyan Shi, PhD; Carter R. Coberley, PhD; James E. Pope, MD

Objective: To evaluate changes in well-being, biometric, and productivity indicators after a well-being intervention.

Methods: Biometric and self-reported outcomes were assessed among 677 retail distribution center employees before and after a 6-month well-being intervention.

Results: Despite lower well-being at baseline compared to an independent random sample of workers, program participants’ well-being, productivity, body mass index, systolic blood pressure, and total cholesterol improved significantly after the intervention, whereas the decline in diastolic blood pressure was not significant. Moreover, participants’ specific transition across well-being segments over the intervention period demonstrated more improvement than decline.

Conclusions: There is evidence that programs designed to improve well-being within a workforce can be used to significantly and positively impact employee health and productivity, which should result in reduced health care costs, improved employee productivity, and increased overall profitability.

Key Takeaways:

  • For six months, employees working in retail distribution centers participated in a well- being improvement intervention.
  • Prior to the intervention, the participants had significantly more challenges pertaining to well-being, physical health and socioeconomic status compared with employees in the surrounding community.
  • Nevertheless, well-being, biometric indicators of health, and presenteeism improved significantly for program participants after the six-month intervention.
  • Specifically, significant improvements were observed for overall well-being, life evaluation, emotional health, physical health, healthy behaviors, basic access, body mass index, systolic blood pressure and total cholesterol, whereas the reductions in diastolic blood pressure and Work Environment scores were not significant.