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Global Employer Insights Survey: Health and Wellbeing

Do companies consider employee health and wellbeing a priority?

Optum surveyed 347 global employers and found employee health and wellbeing (H&W) is a top priority — and it’s increasing in importance over time.

How important to your company is each reason for offering H&W programmes?

Overall, our survey shows companies are prioritizing H&W more than in the past. How companies consider the common reasons for offering H&W programmes as important has also increased as much as 10% since 2021.

How employers rank the importance of the reasons they offer H&W programmes has increased from 2021 to 2022: maintain/improve employee morale – 73% in 2021, 82% in 2022; reduce employee health risks – 71% in 2021, 81% in 2022; promote a more productive workforce – 73% in 2021, 79% in 2022; improve absenteeism/presenteeism – 70% in 2021, 75% in 2022; and, offer competitive package to attract/retain talent – 68% in 2021, 74% in 2022.

Are employees in other countries offered fewer, more or the same number of H&W programmes as those in the country where you’re based?

Many companies are working to expand offerings so that employees working abroad have access to the same number of H&W programmes — or more — as those in the country where they’re based.

In 2022, 55% of employers said they were offering the same H&W programmes in countries outside of where they’re based, compared to 47% in 2020; 27% said they were offering fewer programmes in those countries, compared to 40% in 2020; and, 18% said they were offering more programmes in those countries, compared to 13% in 2020.

Do you think your company’s proportionate spending on H&W programmes will increase, decrease or stay the same in the next 3 years?

Most global employers think their H&W spending will go up over time. The overall number of employers who think their spending will go up has increased over 15% in the last 3 years.

Global employers expect increased proportionate spending on H&W programmes and that has increased since 2020 when 15% said their spending would decrease over the next 3 years, 25% said they would spend the same amount and 58% said their spending would increase. In 2021, 10% said they would spend less, 23% said they would spend the same amount and 67% said they would spend more. In 2022, 5% said they would spend less, 20% said they would spend the same and 74% said their spending would increase over the next 3 years.

Global employers in each region expect an increase in proportionate spending on H&W programmes. The APAC region has the highest number of employers projecting increased spending.

APAC, EMEA and LATAM regions all reflect trends toward more proportionate spending on H&W programmes in the next 3 years. In APAC, 5% predict decreased spending, 13% think they’ll spend the same amount and 82% project increased spending. In EMEA, 7% think they’ll decrease spending, 21% believe they’ll spend the same and 70% think they’ll increase. In LATAM, 3% believe they’ll decrease, 24% think they’ll spend the same and 72% project spending going up.

What really stood out was the support from leadership who took our H&W strategy seriously and supported it financially for the overall success of this programme.

— Employer in India

How are you engaging leadership in strategic planning as it relates to employee health and wellbeing?

Optum can help. We’re on a mission to create a healthier world.  At Optum, we understand that corporate success starts with a healthy workforce. Our integrated health solutions, including our global Employee Assistance Programme, help advance your health and wellbeing strategy to build a culture of health within your organisation.

Learn more at optum.com/globalemployers.

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Survey methodology

  • 347 international employers located in APAC, EMEA or LATAM regions
  • Global companies with 3,000+ employees
  • Decision-makers in human resources, executive, management or administrative roles
  • Surveys administered online from 7 April to 5 May 2022