Health coaching, wellness reimbursement stipend, fitness trackers among continued’s wellness benefits
When continued introduced virtual health coaching to its 100% remote workforce in 2018, team member Stevie St. John was immediately interested. After experiencing some health issues over the past few years, she wanted to make sure she was getting the vitamins and nutrients needed to support good health.
She started working with continued’s health and wellness manager, Amy Martin, who provided research and guidance to help guide her food choices. Through health coaching, St. John also set—and is meeting—goals for increased physical activity.
“Through health coaching, I felt supported 100%—it was all support, no pressure,” said continued copywriter St. John. “I logged my meals and was pleased to find out that I was already doing pretty well, but the guidance and support provided helped me stay on track with my health goals. I’m so glad that I signed up to be part of the program.”
Since the program’s inception, St. John is one of 37 continued staffers or eligible family members to take advantage of health coaching, which is designed to educate and support enrollees in achieving their personal health goals. Among the participants, there have been a combined 40 goals met, ranging from stress reduction and mindfulness to sleep improvement and weight loss.
One-on-one health coaching is available to any interested team member and their family members ages 20 and up.
continued’s Tina Bailey and her husband, Leonard, both took advantage of the benefit and made significant changes to their daily exercise routines and food choices. As a result, the couple reports having more energy, improved sleep, reduced stress, and a combined weight loss of 40 pounds.
“My husband and I are busy working parents and involved in a lot of organizations outside of work, and we’d gotten into some bad habits like frequently dining out, poorly balanced meals, and no regular exercise routine,” said Bailey, senior customer experience specialist. “As a result, we were always feeling run down, stressed, and exhausted. When you’re constantly running on empty and not properly ‘filling up,’ it takes a toll on your overall mental and physical health. I am truly grateful for the health coaching benefit provided for me and my spouse by continued.”
Health coaching is just one of the multitude of wellness benefits available to continued team members.
"Team members are provided wellness resources and encouragement and don’t have to walk through their health journey alone.” — Amy Martin
Upon hire, team members receive up to $150 to use toward the fitness tracker of their choice. Throughout the year, company-wide, voluntary step challenges are offered as a fun way to motivate team members to increase their activity.
In a recent company-wide challenge, the winning team averaged more than 10,000 steps per day, with the all-teams step average coming in at more than 9500 steps per day.
In addition to this up-front incentive for fitness trackers, all team members receive up to $300 per calendar year to be used toward individual health and wellness goals. The wellness-reimbursement program can be used in a variety of ways to best fit each person's definition of health and wellness.
More than 80 percent of continued team members participated in the wellness-reimbursement program in its first year, with gym memberships, standing desks and ergonomic office chairs, home exercise equipment, and massages being the most frequent uses of the stipend.
Team members also receive a subscription to Wellbeats, a virtual, on-demand fitness provider.
"We believe that supporting a healthy and active lifestyle is important and want to encourage our team members to focus on their health and wellness." — Asher Primrose
An event centered around wellness is part of the annual company-wide meeting. A 5K walk/run was held in 2018 in Atlanta, and at the 2019 meeting, a series of stretches and exercises kicked off a step-building scavenger hunt in downtown Palm Springs, California.
“At continued, we believe that supporting a healthy and active lifestyle is important and want to encourage and motivate our team members to focus on their overall health and wellness," said Asher Primrose, Director of Human Resources. “We believe—and the science shows—that these investments are not only highly impactful to the health of our team members, but they also increase team member engagement and retention.”
In 2020, continued will further expand its wellness programs to include additional activity challenges and incentives for preventive care efforts.
“This level of support for employee wellbeing speaks volumes for the leadership of our company,” said continued’s health and wellness manager, Amy Martin, PTA, BS, certified health coach. “At continued, team members are provided wellness resources and encouragement and don’t have to walk through their health journey alone.”