Workforce Well-Being

Board Chair Mark Englizian opened the meeting and introduced new Co-chair Gordon Blasius, VP of Total Rewards at Waste Management, Inc.

Poll 1: How aligned are your business and HR leaders on the idea that employee well-being is a critical piece of achieving your talent objectives?

  • 31% - completely aligned
  • 54% - somewhat aligned
  • 15% - neutral

Comments note that companies are thinking about this but perhaps not as well aligned as they say. Awareness of necessary behaviors by leaders may be lacking, and most companies are likely a work in progress.

i4cp Research

Dedicated Board senior research analyst Carol Morrison presented i4cp well-being research relevant to the discussion topics planned for the meeting’s breakouts:

  • Review of i4cp’s six-element well-being model (physical, mental, financial, career, community and social aspects of well-being).
  • Data from studies in 2019, 2020, and 2022 presented trends in organizational emphasis of and investment in the six elements. Greatest change is shift to top investment in mental well-being, this having taken place since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
  • Talent Imperative study findings presented wellness benefits launched or improved by high-performance organizations to attract and retain talent. Virtual mental health counseling and employee assistance programs were top-of-list.
  • Figures on measurement of well-being program effectiveness and well-being of employees found most companies don’t measure. Top methods organizations use to track both effectiveness of programs and employee well-being include employee engagement surveys and costs related to health insurance and those related to healthcare overall.


Featured Speaker

Guest speaker MaryBeth Forte

Executive Director of Total Well-being at global pharmaceutical firm Daiichi-Sankyo. Forte is based in the U.S. subsidiary, Daiichi-Sankyo, Inc. (DSI)

Key points Forte covered in her discussion of how here team transitioned from TR to total well-being:

  • Her team looks at employees holistically, believing that doing so and tapping into that will enable workers to thrive
  • Began with small sessions in well-being and financial well-being, such as visualizing retirement
  • New chief people officer brought together two HR teams (research and commercial sides of the business) into one, supporting holistic approach
  • Transformation of business into oncology focus upped work pace and complexity heightening work/life balance concerns
  • Looked at HR structure and transitioned from TR to total well-being, consisting of comp, benefits, employee experience and engagement
  • Regional engagement survey was first major undertaking – broader than TR considerations
  • Team began to work out strategy and philosophy of total well-being – used virtual focus groups (vendor assisted) to identify key issues to employees – didn’t promise dramatic change, identified that better communication needed to enable employees to recognize that various programs all fell under the umbrella of rewards
  • Emotional, social, physical, and financial elements make up DSI well-being model. Focus question: Are we offering programs and experiences that enable our people to bring their very best to serve patients? It’s all about how we can help our employees thrive, bring their best selves to the job every day in service of patients, and so they can also be their best selves in their personal lives
  • Team laid out a five-year roadmap, specifying focus per year. Added perspective – lens of inclusion and diversity, which includes evaluating well-being programs to ensure there is something for everyone in the employee population and is there something that needs to be added. Those questions guide planned changes

MaryBeth and her colleague Lauren Mutz were featured on i4cp’s Getting Hybrid Work Right call on October 27, 2022 in a presentation that provides greater detail on DSI’s WeTHRIVE program. A case study by Carol is also in process.

Breakout Group Discussions

Mark presented his well-being construct (see slide 20 in presentation).  

Based on the construct, the two breakout groups discussed:

  • Talent outcomes – desirable and undesirable
  • Rank ordering prioritization of talent outcomes
  • How to measure the success of investments in well-being 

Select Highlights

  • Measures must be meaningful to company
  • Should align with well-being
  • Member suggestions: participation in well-being programs, healthcare trends, mental health costs, EAP trends, vendor data
  • Member reported use of weekly survey (vendor Pecan), including employees’ ratings of managers to spot problem areas
  • Retention and engagement are major concerns: internal movement, belonging, better evidence of D&I, culture of care
  • Member leverages internal communities to support well-being goals, especially belonging.
  • With limited budgets at present, TR can leverage internal communities (ERGs/BRGs) to help support goals
  • Executive incentives have ties to engagement survey results
  • Cadence of well-being surveys is desirable
  • Member uses vendor Lyra and seeks to position firm and vendor to provide long-term support (versus per incident) to employees so that workers instinctively know that support is available when needed

i4cp’s Total Rewards Leader Board is reserved exclusively for the senior-most total rewards leader in organizations. It is designed to serve as a true Board of Directors for the function and ensure its members are in the driver’s seat of organizational innovation.

This meeting is exclusively for members of the Total Rewards Leader Board. If you'd like to participate, please contact us to see if you qualify. If you are an i4cp member, please log in to access the registration/meeting details.
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