How to find a job that values employee health
Your physical and mental health can impact your productivity in the workplace. If you're unwell, you won't perform as well as you could.
When you leave health conditions untreated, any minor issues can become major ones. And, healthcare can be expensive, so you may end up facing significant financial stress.
Working for a company that prioritizes employee health will make you feel valued. You can take care of yourself and your dependents when you get access to perks, such as health insurance, disability insurance, vision insurance, and wellness plans.
All while saving money and reducing the risk of long-term, adverse health consequences.
But why is employee health important to employers? What types of health benefits should you look for? And how do you know if your employer values your good health?
Read on to find out.
What is employee health?
Your health matters, and your employer should make it a top priority. When you're fit and healthy, you'll be less likely to take sick leave and be more efficient in your role.
The topic of employee health covers both physical and mental health. And it also includes wellness.
When you get a job, you'll want to know if you can get health insurance for yourself and your dependents.
Depending on how many hours you work, the location, and your job title, you may be eligible for medical, dental, and vision insurance.
Other healthcare incentives may be available, such as occupational health services, pandemic payments, paid sick leave, and employee wellness programs.
Why are more employers starting to care about employee health?
Healthy employees are happy employees. When a company values the health and well-being of its team members, it creates a positive workplace culture.
Certain conditions can have a direct impact on productivity. Team members with poor health outcomes will result in absenteeism, and if you're not feeling your best, you'll be more likely to have a workplace accident.
Chronic stress can cause employee burnout. This condition can lead to exhaustion and a lack of motivation for work. In a recent survey, 77% of people said they'd experienced burnout during their current employment period.
Preventative care and wellness programs can help reduce the risk of employee burnout.
Positions that come with health care are appealing to job seekers, and benefits can help companies attract high-quality candidates.
When employers value good health, it benefits the employees and the business.
Do employers pay for health benefits?
If a company in the U.S. has more than 50 employees, they need to offer basic health insurance. The employer can choose which health plans to offer you and the type of coverage you'll get.
To take advantage of health insurance, you'll need to meet a few eligibility requirements based on your role, location, and hours worked. For example, most full-time employees and some part-time employees will receive benefits.
Your health insurance will usually cover both you and your dependents. You'll usually still need to pay a percentage, but you can expect your employer to cover most of the fees.
What types of employee health benefits should you look for?
If you're looking to switch jobs, here are some of the top health benefits programs you should look for.
Remember, your healthcare priorities will depend on your life stage and can change over time. For example, young families will have different needs than a soon-to-be retiree.
1. Health insurance
Health insurance is a common perk you can get from your employer. It reduces healthcare costs for services, such as primary care, urgent care, emergency services, and referrals.
You may get different plans to choose from, so you should always check the details to make sure it's right for you. Unlike personal plans, employer-sponsored group plans can't exclude coverage if you have a pre-existing or chronic condition.
Depending on your lifestyle, the basic plan may not have everything you need. You can usually pay extra to boost your coverage to a more comprehensive plan.
Some insurance providers have lower deductibles when you use an in-network provider. This can be a great option if you don’t already have a regular physician.
2. Dental insurance
One of the top employee health benefits you should look for is dental insurance.
When it comes to your oral health, prevention is best. Caring for your teeth and getting regular checkups and cleanings can reduce the risk of more complex issues.
For example, untreated gum disease can cause loose teeth, infections, and heart problems.
Some employers offer a dental insurance plan that covers you and your dependents. Plans can vary, and you may need to pay a contribution to any services.
If you're eligible for dental insurance, you can expect reduced fees for general dental and advanced dental services.
General dental includes preventative care as well as fillings and root canals. Advanced dental can cover treatments such as orthodontics and dentures.
Remember, if you get dental insurance, make sure you take advantage of it.
3. Vision insurance
In the U.S., more than 194.1 million adults need vision correction devices. With so many people relying on glasses, vision insurance is a perk you should keep an eye out for.
If you get vision insurance, your employer will pay at least 50% of the premiums. Depending on the plan, you may need to pay a gap for any services you use.
Vision insurance reduces the cost of eye examinations, eyeglasses, and contact lenses. Plus, the plan may also cover elective laser eye surgery. It should cover both you and your immediate family.
If you're having trouble with your vision and don't see an optometrist, it can lead to long-term issues. And it can have an impact on your work performance.
For example, you may get migraines and suffer from eye strain. In a digital world, you may not be able to do your job properly.
4. Disability insurance
Even if you're fit and healthy now, it doesn't mean things won't change in the future. When your employer gives you disability insurance, it protects the finances of you and your loved ones.
Employers may offer short-term and long-term disability insurance. If you can't work due to a disability, you'll get a percentage of your annual salary.
There may be a waiting period before your payments start. And you may have to pay taxes on your disability payments. Not all disability insurance is the same, and you should think about your coverage level before committing to a plan.
If your employer doesn't offer disability insurance, you may still be eligible for workers’ compensation.
This is a government scheme that gives you compensation if you're injured in the workplace. However, workers’ compensation doesn't cover you if you get hurt outside of work.
Some workplaces offer free immunizations to employees. These clinics may take place at work, giving all employees the chance to participate.
Some employers are currently offering free COVID-19 vaccines on the job. Other employers are offering financial incentives to get the vaccine.
Workplaces may also offer flu shot clinics.
Having access to immunizations at work is convenient and can reduce the risk of illness spreading.
6. Mental health services
More companies are investing in initiatives to support the mental health of workers. Mental health includes a broad range of conditions such as depression, anxiety, and substance use disorders.
Some health insurance plans include mental health and behavioral health services.
Be mindful because some plans don't include coverage for therapists outside of a certain network. If you already have a relationship with a therapist, it can be difficult to make the switch.
Your employer may have other mental health support available. Encouraging a positive and inclusive work environment can reduce stress for employees and boost productivity.
Mental health awareness initiatives, downtime, workshops, flexible work arrangements, and paid mental health leave can also be beneficial.
7. Health screening
Smart employers understand that healthy employees can save the company money. With a few preventative measures, businesses can reduce sick pay and have workers present and ready to work.
Health screening is an extra perk your employer may offer you. Screening checks can be done via your general practitioner, through a virtual assessment, or at a pop-up clinic.
These screens can flag your health risk for various issues, including high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol. You may have access to urine tests, blood tests, ECGs, and fitness tests.
Depending on the job’s requirements, you may need to take a hearing and vision test.
If you're a new employee, you may also be given a personality test to determine your work style. These tests can help the company understand what makes you tick and help you be more productive.
8. Wellness programs
Some companies offer wellness programs to support employee well-being and improve morale.
Wellness-focused employee health services may include mindfulness workshops, financial coaching, resilience training, and meditation sessions.
Your employer may provide group fitness classes and relaxation exercises, such as yoga or tai chi. And they may have nutritionists available if you want to learn more about healthy eating habits.
Plus, the employer may promote a healthy lifestyle with discounted gym memberships and nutritious office snacks.
You may have access to health and well-being apps and a workplace counseling service.
Your workplace may even have team-building sessions to help maintain positive relationships between staff members. These sessions may include trust exercises and fun getting-to-know-you activities.
9. Prescription drugs
If you get health insurance from your employer, it will likely cover prescription medication.
But even if your benefit comes with prescription drug coverage, it’s still important to do your research. There may be drugs you need that aren’t listed in your plan. For example, the insurer may only cover you for generic medication.
Prescription coverage usually comes with a copay or deductible. Make sure it also covers your dependents, as there may be times when you rely on this benefit.
How to determine whether a company will value your health as an employee
Not all companies make employee health a priority. If you're looking for a new job and want an employer who values your health, there are a few things you can look for.
Often, the job description will include a list of health benefits. You can also browse the company's website to get a better idea about its culture and employee perks.
You can look up the brand on third-party websites to read reviews from the previous staff.
If you get asked to attend a job interview, the employer will usually discuss the company culture. They may talk about health initiatives and benefits.
At the end of the interview, the hiring manager may ask, "Do you have any questions?" You can use this opportunity to ask about health and wellness benefits.
Where to find a job that values your health
You can start your job search on our job board. When you browse listings in your area, look for positions that mention health benefits and initiatives. There are jobs for all industries, skills, and experience levels.
Or you can join the conversation on Jobcase about benefits, ask questions, and get insights and support from real people.
The employee health benefits you can expect
When employers care about your health, it'll make you feel valued at work. With the right benefits, you can manage your health and well-being and have fewer sick days.
More employers are starting to value employee health, which you can take advantage of.
When you apply for your next job, consider what types of health benefits you need and want. Common benefits include health insurance, dental insurance, vision insurance, prescription coverage, and workplace immunizations.
Plus, you may get access to health screening services, mental health care, and wellness programs.
With the right employer, you can take care of yourself and your dependents. They'll benefit from a healthier, happier team.