Health Links [HL]: Why is the health and safety of your employees important to you?
CSAA Insurance Group [CSAA]: Our mission is to establish a work environment that promotes personal accountability for health and wellness and reduces employee health risks, with goals of enhancing employees’ quality of life and supporting a high performance culture.
HL: What does your workplace health and safety program look like? Do you offer both components to employees?
CSAA: Our workplace health program strives to provide employees with the resources they need to live a healthy lifestyle. We have an online wellness portal which has customized health and safety activities for employees to utilize. Employees have the opportunity to earn wellness points when they engage in healthy activities, complete educational training, or participate in onsite wellness events. CSAA IG has an onsite wellness coordinator to assist with questions as well as run the group fitness classes located in the office. We have also built a wellness champion network help to promote a culture of health. We also have a strong focus on safety. CSAA Insurance Group funds a nonprofit, the Community Safety Foundation, which is dedicated to improving the safety and security of our communities. The Foundation supports organizations that are dedicated to keeping our communities safe, healthy and productive. CSAA IG employees support this effort by receiving 24 hours of company-paid time off to volunteer each year.
HL: How will you/do you know your program is successful?
CSAA: We track program participation and engagement and set goals to keep the program growing. We complete an annual employee wellness satisfaction survey to hear the employee’s thoughts on improvement and programming ideas. We compare health risk assessment percentages from year to year to get insight on risk factors and areas of improvement.
HL: What obstacles did you have to overcome to get your program started? How did you overcome them?
CSAA: When we launched the wellness program in 2009 we had limited communication opportunities to promote the wellness program. Now after working closely with the CSAA IG communications team and building a trusted relationship with that group we have proven our value and have been supported with weekly communications company-wide, newsletters, SharePoint sites, posters, desk drops and digital displays. We also had a variety of programs that were offered to employees, but they were very disjointed. We were able to overcome that obstacle by finding a wellness vendor who could support all of our programs and activities by providing rewards for all levels of engagement.
HL: Does your health and safety program help give back to your community?
CSAA: Volunteerism is important and is a component of our wellness incentive for employees. We promote and donate to local events and charitable races as well as host on-site fundraising programs tied to our group fitness classes. We are located next to the Santa Fe Trail where we host clean up sessions to keep the area clean and safe for employees to walk. In addition, the Community Safety Foundation mentioned previously offers employees 24 hours of company-paid time off to volunteer each year. After employees volunteer 30 hours of cumulative volunteer service at one or more qualifying nonprofit organizations during the year, they receive a $300 Charity Gift Card. These can be redeemed online as a donation to any eligible 501©(3) nonprofit organization of the employee’s choice. Additionally, employee donations to qualifying nonprofit organizations are matched dollar-for-dollar, up to $2,500 per employee each calendar year.
HL: What tip/advice would you give to a business that is considering starting a workplace health and safety program?
CSAA: While there are best practices to utilize it is important to understand that it is not a one-size fits all approach to a successful workplace health and safety program. Understanding the employee’s risk factors as well as their needs is important to tailoring a program and keeping participants engaged. Starting small and growing the program towards creating a culture of health takes time persistence and isn’t going to happen overnight!