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Buck Consultants Reports Wellness Programs Are Truly Global; Objectives Vary by Region
Date:10/10/2007

NEW YORK, Oct. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Buck Consultants, an ACS company and one of the world's leading human resource and benefits consulting firms, today announced the results of its inaugural global survey on workplace wellness strategies.

Buck's study, "WORKING WELL: A Global Survey of Health Promotion and Workplace Wellness Strategies," analyzed responses from 555 organizations representing approximately 7 million employees.

Such programs are most prevalent in the United States, with 86 percent of responding organizations offering them. But even outside North America, about one in five employers offers wellness programs. Multinational employers that have developed a global wellness strategy are 50 percent more likely to provide wellness programs outside the United States than other employers in those geographies.

Objectives for wellness programs vary by region. In the United States, health care cost reduction is the top goal. Canadian employers cite employee attraction and retention as the primary objective, while in Europe, top goals are to reduce employee absences due to sickness or disability. Respondents in other geographies seek improved workplace morale as the main objective for offering wellness programs. Improving worker productivity is also among the top goals across the globe.

"This broad range of objectives is a good indication of why wellness initiatives are becoming popular around the world," said Barry Hall, a Buck principal who directed the survey. "Employers recognize that improving their employees' health and reducing the risk of disease also returns real value to the company in multiple ways."

Following a plethora of "feel good" wellness programs that came and went in the 1980s and '90s, employer interest in wellness has surged in the last few years, driven by financial motivations. However, while employees may appreciate many of the new programs and incentives, Buck's survey assessed how well today's wellness in
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SOURCE Affiliated Computer Services, Inc.
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