Future Workplace and View asked U.S. and Canadian workers in an April 2019 survey to identify which workplace amenities matter most to them. The top three named were air quality, comfortable lighting and water quality, while on-site gyms—long assumed to be a major perk for employees—ranked near the bottom of the list, at No. 8. 

While these results may be surprising, they do align with research indicating that “high-quality” workspaces—ones that address factors such as noise levels and water quality—see a reduction in employee absenteeism by as much as four days each year.

When it comes to devising a workplace wellness program, executives should first ask employees what they want and what they believe will support their productivity. Getting hard data will help companies determine where to focus their wellness efforts. Where possible, employees also should be offered some control over their workplace atmospherics, such as temperature and lighting. Finally, remember that “wellness” includes not only physical and environmental factors but also emotional and mental well-being.  Taking a holistic approach to your workplace wellness program should help keep your employees—and your bottom line—healthy and happy.

This article appeared in the Spring 2020 issue of IQ Insigniam Quarterly, with the headline “What Employees Really Want.” To
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