Here are this week’s links to a few good stories that we found and selected because we feel they might add valuable insights and perspectives for small to medium size businesses.

  • The support for employee welfare programs continues to rise.  In CSU prof’s 10 tips for boosting healthy eating, happiness, employee productivity by Caitlin Hendee of the Denver Business Journal, the results of the study seem to mirror what I am seeing within our own organization.  Two quotes by professor Melissa Wdowik resonated with me:
    • “Good nutrition benefits the body both inside and out.  It plays a critical role in preventing and managing chronic disease, overweight and acute illnesses such as colds.”
    • “Just as important, eating healthfully increases energy, improves self-esteem, promotes mood and reduces stress.  All of these ultimately lead to improved productivity and reduced health care costs.”

The takeaway here is that if you don’t have an employee wellness program now, perhaps you should.  Many companies have already taken the plunge and many more will.  While much of the increased cost of health insurance is beyond a business owner’s control, here is one that just might help.

  • Providing health insurance to employees still appears to be the primary employee benefit offering for employers.  However, the nature of these plans have changed significantly over the past few years, according to the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) 2015 Employee Benefits research report.  Some of the recent trends include:
    • Changes in plan composition
    • Cost shifting to employees
    • More companies offering mental health coverage, contraception coverage, vision insurance, short-term disability insurance and health savings accounts (HSAs)
    • Preventative and welfare benefits

Even Esen, SHRM’s director of survey programs stated “in an environment with limited compensation growth in most sectors of the U.S. economy, a competitive benefits package can make the difference in attracting top talent to an organization.” Read Health Care Dominates Rewards Mix, Benefits Survey Reveals to learn more.

  • In a blog post on the American Express Open Forum website – 3 Simple Steps to Keep Employees Engaged – co-founder Kim Kaupe of ZinePak offers these suggestions:
    • Get everyone involved
    • Create a learning environment
    • Find out what matters

Her company is fairly new and only has 10 full-time team members but her advice is something all business owners should follow.

If you have any questions or would like to learn more about this topic, please reach out to Genesis HR Solutions at or 800-367-8367.

Genesis HR Solutions is the premier PEO provider for Massachusetts based businesses.