Workplace Wellness Programs


Employer promotions and programs aimed at supporting healthy behavior and improving health outcomes among employees are a $6 billion industry in the United States. However, RAND research has shown that these programs have little effect on health care costs. RAND experts have also looked at the effectiveness of employee incentives, and how small to medium employers can implement a successful program.

  • Business people in an elevator


    How to Increase Participation in Workplace Health and Well-Being Initiatives

    May 10, 2018

    Many employers are actively looking at ways to improve health and well-being in their workplaces. Increasing employee participation in health and wellness programs requires strategies to address health risks, engagement with staff, and buy-in and support from management.

  • Smiling employees having meal in office lunchroom, photo by WavebreakMediaMicro/Adobe Stock


    Britain's Healthiest Workplace survey findings

    Nov 25, 2019

    Absence and presenteeism accounts for an average of 38 days' lost productivity per employee per year, marking an upward trend in lost productivity since 2014, when the number was only 23 days.

Explore Workplace Wellness Programs

  • Journal Article

    Do Workplace Wellness Programs Reduce Medical Costs? Evidence from a Fortune 500 Company

    The recent passage of the Affordable Care Act has heightened the importance of workplace wellness programs. This paper used administrative data from 2002 to 2007 for PepsiCo's self-insured plan members to evaluate the effect of its wellness program on medical costs and utilization.

    May 1, 2013

  • healthy meal and keyboard


    A Review of Workplace Wellness Programs

    Ninety-two percent of U.S. employers with 200 or more employees reported offering workplace wellness programs in 2009. However, participation remains limited; a 2010 survey suggests that typically less than 20 percent of eligible employees participate in wellness interventions.

    Nov 27, 2012

  • Pill bottle and pills on top of money


    Power to the People: The Role of Consumer-Controlled Personal Health Management Systems in the Evolution of Employer-Based Health Care Benefits

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has piqued employers' interest in new benefit designs. This paper reviews consumer-controlled personal health management systems that could help individuals control and manage their health care.

    Sep 13, 2011

  • Content

    Harry H. Liu

    Senior Policy Researcher; Affiliate Faculty, Pardee RAND Graduate School
    Education Ph.D. in health services research and policy, University of Rochester; M.S. in social medicine and health management, Fudan University; B.Med. in medicine, Shanghai Medical University

  • Content

    Hans Pung

    President, RAND Europe
    Education M.Sc. in mathematical modelling and numerical analysis, Oxford University; M.St. in modern history, Oxford University; B.S. in mathematics, United States Military Academy

  • Content

    Michael Whitmore

    Research Leader
    Education M.B.A., Cass Business School; M.A. in applied social science and social work, Durham University; B.Sc. in psychology and law, Keele University