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Do Healthy Workers Create a More Profitable Business?

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From workplace politics to government compliance issues, businesses are presented with a slew of challenges, but one that often times goes unnoticed is the health of your workers. Did you know that the Health and Safety Executive reported around 27 million working days were lost in 2011 and 2012? Of those missed days, 22.7 million were due to work-related illness and 4.3 million were due to workplace injuries. How is a business supposed to stay in the black, improve their bottom lines and increase employee retention?

The first place to start is looking at the health of your employees and asking, “What am I doing to promote wellness in the workplace?” Offering a wellness program that manages employees’ long-term conditions with the intention of driving action within the company is healthy for both the business its staff members.

It is no coincidence that organizations taking better care of their employees generally see increases in productivity because employees can stay on the job longer, take fewer sick days and are both mentally and emotionally available. While no one can say for certain that ROI and employee health are directly related, studies show that companies recognized for their employee health and safety cultures outperform the Standard & Poor’s 500 by 3.03% – 5.27%. It may be that these companies have it all figured out. Healthy employees are more alert, prepared and focused; it’s that simple.

While studies suggest a healthier workforce makes for healthier earnings, companies still have to decide if wellness programs are worth the investment. The capital needed to start a health and wellness program for your business may be what’s holding you back, but the returns from a healthier and happier workforce may just be worthwhile. Making this pivotal change to promote healthy behaviors could potentially lend to impactful results.

Are you doing enough to promote a healthier workforce?

If starting a robust program isn’t in the cards for you, the good news is that there are small steps you can take to promote wellness. Here are a few ideas to bring health to your business:

  • Offer fruit or veggie trays once a week in the break room as opposed to cookie trays (a small gesture with big benefits).
  • Bring vaccinations to the workplace. Encouraging and even funding vaccinations for employees is a great ROI.
  • Encourage exercise. Offer on-site gym classes such as Pilates, Boot Camp or create secure bike stations for commuters. If structural changes are too significant, consider starting a walking/running group in the office or offer discounts at a local gym.
  • Stress taking over the office? Bring in health experts to speak on these issues and discuss ways to be healthier. Have a brown-bag luncheon filled with healthier food options while someone speaks about the benefits of clean eating.
  • Have incentive programs or winner-takes-all programs. At Paycom we have a Biggest Loser contest and participants put in $10 to join and after a span of several months the winner collects the money. Weekly updates are posted to keep employees motivated.
  • Be the advocate of clean eating. When you’re busy at work it’s easy to quickly grab something to eat, which typically comes from a vending machine. Offer employees healthy options opposed to chips and candy.
  • Mental Health is a serious issue. Sleep deprivation, stress, depression all lead to inefficiency at work. Bring in massage therapists one day and allow employees to sign up for mini sessions or simply encourage them to take short breaks to catch their breath. Step outside for some fresh air, talk with a mentor or go on a walk.

Still not sure why you should care?

Before you disregard the idea of adding a wellness program to your organization let’s consider the benefits. A study by Towers Watson Staying at Work 2009-2010, revealed greater performance trends among companies with effective health and productivity programs. Specifically, these companies experienced:

  • 11% greater revenue per employee;
  • 28% higher shareholder returns;
  • 1.2 percentage points in lower medical trends and
  • 1.8 fewer reported absences per employee.

The take away is that companies are experiencing financial gains from investing in wellness programs and you can too. Whether its small investments or large reconstructive projects, a wellness program benefits both the employer and the employees. Start planning today.


Author Bio:

As a Human Resource Professional with over 20 years of experience, Jenny has extensive experience in management, mentoring, policy development and recruiting. Jenny’s team player mentality and leadership abilities make her an elite HR Director who is always on top of the latest HR trends. She relentlessly directs associates and executives to achieve their maximum potential for both themselves and their companies.

What Substance Abuse in the Workplace Costs Employers

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Of the estimated 14.8 million Americans who use illegal drugs, 70% of them are employed, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Therefore, odds are your company employs workers who fall into this group. The use of drugs or alcohol by employees inside or outside the office can be costly for a business, leading to:

  • increased turnover rate
  • workplace incidents
  • poor workplace morale

From a financial perspective, the National Institute on Drug Abuse found substance abusers cost employers twice as much in workers’ compensation and medical expenses. Additionally, substance abusers are five times more likely to file workers’ compensation claims.

Furthermore, employees with alcohol dependencies are nearly three times more likely to have injury-related absences, according to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. In 2015, that council reported that federal surveys indicate 24% of workers reported drinking on the job at least once in the past year.

Recognizing the signs

Knowing how to handle substance abuse in the workplace starts with recognizing the existence of a problem. Whether it is abuse of alcohol, prescription drugs or illegal substances, a number of visible signs can indicate an employee needs help:

  • change in appearance
  • frequent tardiness
  • decline in job performance
  • slurred speech and drowsiness
  • mood swings and irritability
  • scent of alcohol

None of these signs alone indicates a substance abuse issue, but intervening early with employees displaying a combination of these signs may be valuable to your business. Implementing a companywide policy, training managers to recognize signs of substance abuse, and setting expectations with employees through training can help safeguard your business and your workforce.

 Disclaimer: This blog includes general information about legal issues and developments in the law. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These informational materials are not intended, and must not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. You need to contact a lawyer licensed in your jurisdiction for advice on specific legal problems.


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Posted in Blog, Compliance, Featured

Jason Hines

by Jason Hines

Author Bio:

Jason Hines is a Paycom compliance attorney. With more than five years’ experience in the legal field, he monitors developments in human resource laws, rules and regulations to ensure any changes are promptly updated in Paycom’s system for our clients. Previously, he was an attorney at the Oklahoma City law firm Elias, Books, Brown & Nelson. Hines earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Oklahoma and his juris doctor degree from the Oklahoma City University School of Law, where he graduated cum laude. A fan of the Oklahoma City Thunder, Hines also enjoys exploring the great outdoors with his wife and daughter.


5 Podcasts That Every HR Professional Should Download

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Podcasts provide the opportunity to sit like a fly on the wall and listen to some of the most brilliant minds in the world converse about today’s biggest trends and challenges.

According to a study by Triton Digital, nearly one quarter of Americans listen to a podcast at least once a month. Education is a popular subject, with 40% of podcast listeners tuning in to that type. If you’re an HR professional or business leader looking to broaden your knowledge of HR and HR technology this year, I highly recommend filling your ears and brains with these five podcasts throughout ’18.

1. HBR IdeaCast

From Harvard Business Review, the weekly HBR IdeaCast features leading thinkers in business and management discussing a variety of key topics in the work world.

It is an excellent resource for insights on a wide array of subjects including, but not limited to, HR. The discussions apply directly to organizations nationwide. The podcast reminds me of NPR’s Fresh Air, but with an emphasis on business leaders.

Recommended episodes:

2. HR Happy Hour

Since 2009, HR Happy Hour has featured thought leaders, workplace and technology experts, academics and more to take on important aspects impacting HR, technology and the workplace.

The podcast is so long-running that it has episodes dedicated to just about every HR topic under the sun. The charming hosts Steve Boese and Trish McFarlane make trending topics fun and informative.

Recommended episodes:


From the UK’s Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, the monthly CIPD podcast covers everything from talent acquisition to workplace training and cybersecurity.

CIPD’s international perspective brings fresh eyes to subjects that resonate with many American HR professionals. With a backlog of more than seven years’ worth of episodes available, it’s easy to recommend.

Recommended episodes:

4. Workology Podcast

Covering the science and art of the workplace, Jessica Miller-Merrell’s Workology Podcast offers insights and actionable tips on HR and recruiting. Each 45-minute episode promises an in-depth look at every company’s most valuable asset: the employee.

In asking sharp, pointed questions about the latest HR trends, Miller-Merrell does an excellent job as host, bringing a unique and often unexpected take on familiar subject matter.

Recommended episodes:

5. HR Break Room

The official podcast of Paycom, HR Break Room brings you quick conversations on hot topics in HR and HR technology. Co-host Chelsea Justice and I talk with guest experts about the challenges faced by the everyday workplace, as well as their solutions.

To be a bit self-indulgent, I love doing this podcast because it gives me the opportunity to talk with some of the most brilliant minds in the industry. In our first year, our esteemed guests have included New York Times best-selling author Cy Wakeman, millennial expert Adam Smiley Poswolsky, HR Bartender’s Sharlyn Lauby, futurist Jacob Morgan, author and Harvard professor Mihir Desai and of course, motivational speaker and leadership expert, Mark Sanborn.

Recommended episodes:

You can learn more about goings-on within the HR sphere by subscribing to HR Break Room podcast. Here’s to a year full of professional growth through podcasts!

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Posted in Blog, Featured, HR Management, Leadership


by Caleb Masters

Author Bio:

Caleb is the host of The HR Break Room and a Webinar and Podcast Producer at Paycom. With more than 5 years of experience as a published online writer and content producer, Caleb has produced dozens of podcasts and videos for multiple industries both local and online. Caleb continues to assist organizations creatively communicate their ideas and messages through researched talks, blog posts and new media. Outside of work, Caleb enjoys running, discussing movies and trying new local restaurants.

Deadline Extended

Employer Deadline Extended for Furnishing 2017 ACA Forms

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Distribution of 2017 Affordable Care Act (ACA) Forms 1095-B or -C to your employees has been extended.

As issued in Notice 2018-06, the IRS has extended the deadline from Jan. 31 to March 2. (However, the deadline to provide Forms W-2 and 1099 to employees and contract workers remains as Jan. 31.)

Filing deadlines unchanged

While the deadline to furnish forms was extended, the filing deadlines remain the same: Feb. 28 for paper forms, and April 2 for electronic forms.

IRS Notice 2018-06 emphasizes that employers who do not comply with the due dates for furnishing or filing are subject to penalties under sections 6722 or 6721.

Good-faith transition relief extended

The IRS also announced the extension of good-faith transition relief. This may allow an employer to avoid some penalties if it can show that it made good-faith efforts to comply with the information reporting requirements for 2017.

This relief applies only to incorrect and incomplete information reported on the ACA forms, and not to a failure to file or furnish the forms in a timely manner. Additionally, the IRS stated it does not anticipate extending either the good-faith transition relief or the furnishing deadline in future years.

Contact a trusted tax professional if you have questions on how this may affect your business specifically.

Click here to read more about how the ACA is affect by the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Disclaimer: This blog includes general information about legal issues and developments in the law. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These informational materials are not intended, and must not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. You need to contact a lawyer licensed in your jurisdiction for advice on specific legal problems.

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Posted in ACA, Blog, Compliance, Featured

Erin Maxwell

by Erin Maxwell

Author Bio:

As a compliance attorney for Paycom, Erin Maxwell monitors legal and regulatory changes at the state and federal level, focusing on health and employee benefits laws, to ensure the Paycom system is updated accordingly. She previously served as assistant general counsel at Asset Servicing Group in Oklahoma City. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Oklahoma and a J.D. from the University of Oklahoma. Outside of work, Maxwell enjoys politics, historical mysteries and spending time with her family.


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