Health Links (HL): Why did your business decide become a Health Links Certified Healthy Business?
Fort Collins Housing Authority (FCHA): We chose Health Links to be our platform to validate all the initiative FCHA’s L.I.F.E. (Living Intentionally for Everyday) Wellness committee had put towards having “healthy staff from hire to rehire”. The organization has been led by the CEO’s support to care for employees’ wellbeing and we wanted to portray how important it is to have a health conscious mindset.
(HL): What benefits did the certification bring to your business?
(FCHA): Being certified, the organization was able to feel a boost in morale that each participating employee contributed to. It solidified the L.I.F.E. Committees groundwork and the committee’s work has been marked as a benefit to those who work for FCHA.
(HL): Has this certification changed the way your business thinks about wellness and safety?
(FCHA): If anything, the certification has boosted our confidence by ensuring we are on the right track. The certification has also opened our eyes to focus areas that we can incorporate as we continue to develop our program.
(HL): Has the Health Links certification or your wellness program affected your surrounding community?
(FCHA): Our programs have mostly been limited to staff and their families, but the good thing about teaching a healthy lifestyle is that it doesn’t stop there. EVERY person can benefit about learning ways to choose health. We think that by empowering those around us, naturally, they will share their healthy views and successes with their network and it will continue farther that we can tell.
Health Links (HL): Why is the health and wellness of your employees important to you?
Fort Collins Housing Authority (FCHA): Our employees are the key to a running a successful organization. It is important for them to feel valued and at their best in order to thrive.
Our three main Wellness Program goals are to:
1. Enable employees and their dependents to feel their best, eat well, move more, & embrace work-life balance.
2. Minimize the impact of rising health care costs on our organization and plan members.
3. Maximize productivity by providing a healthy and safe work environment and supporting healthy behaviors.
HL: How will you/do you know your program is successful?
FCHA: To ensure our program is successful we are continually analyzing its operation including gathering as much employee input and feedback throughout each program offered. Additionally, each year we shape our annual operating plan based on an employee interest survey to ensure we are catching the real-time needs and desires of our staff. The committee is also able to utilize health data from FCHA’s agency wide blood screening for benchmarking, reviewing and addressing trends.
HL: What obstacles did you have to overcome to get your program started? How did you overcome them?
FCHA: Our program is originated and designed by committee. Committee members volunteer to serve while maintaining their regular job duties so I think just the initial hump of “where do we start?” is always the biggest challenge. Along with that is just the progression of further establishing the committee and creating those founding documents that back up your program decisions. Networking was one way we found answers we were looking for. There are many organizations in Colorado that are resources for bringing wellness into the workplace.
HL: Do you incorporate safety along with your wellness program? If so, what does this look like?
FCHA: Our wellness program is designed with employees in mind. It is formed to provide all facets of wellbeing so we do incorporate safety to a degree. We designate one quarter to Life Management and another to Self-Care and have Human Resources as part of the committee to ensure we can address how to further provide a safe and comfortable work place.
HL: What tip/advice would you give to a business that is considering starting a workplace wellness program?
FCHA: Establish a foundation and clear goals at the base of implementation. Doing this will give you the confidence you need in order to gain support on all sides.