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320 Granite Run Drive, PO Box 3320, Lancaster, PA 17604-3320
Employment Resources Bulletin
How To Encourage Employees To Keep Their New Year's Health Resolutions
The most popular New Year’s resolutions are often related to health and wellness. Your employees may also want to eat better, exercise more or achieve work-life balance. Here’s how you can support your employees and help them achieve their health goals. As a bonus, you could save money on health insurance costs as your employees get healthier.
Offer Health Screenings
Provide employees with access to information that helps them address their specific health concerns and take an active role in their wellness. A health screening provides specific information about cholesterol, blood pressure, blood glucose, and body mass index.
Improve Vending Machine Options
Give employees better food and beverage choices when you replace the soda and candy machines. Opt for health vending machines that serve fruit, water and yogurt.
Select Healthy Catering Options
Catered lunches and refreshments at meetings show your employees that you appreciate them. Select healthy options like salads, fruit or whole grain wraps to promote better nutrition.
Hand Out Reusable Water Bottles
Drinking more water is a key to alertness, productivity and wellness. A reusable water encourages employees to drink enough water every day.
Host a Contest
Reward employees who eat more fruits and veggies, exercise every day or get more sleep. The prizes can be gift cards to a yoga studio, cardio class or health-focused restaurant.
Provide Discounted Gym Memberships
Your employees may find it easier to move more if they have access to a gym. A discounted gym membership can be a good motivator for your employees to work out alone or with co-workers.
Organize a Walking Club or Sports Team
Start a lunchtime walking club, or assemble a bowling, baseball or basketball team and join your community’s adult sports league. Your employees can get fit and have fun together as a team.
Participate in a Charity 5K
Work together as a company to raise money for a local charity. Everyone can participate in a 5K by walking or running in the event.
Hire a Yoga Teacher
Yoga helps your employees relax and can improve productivity, creativity and decision making. Hire a yoga instructor to teach a class during lunch or before work as you enhance your work environment.
Designate Meditation Space
Meditation reduces stress and promotes relaxation. Choose a quiet space where employees can take a break to meditate and unwind.
Implement Better Work-Life Balance
Allow employees to improve their work-life balance, and they will be more present at work. Encourage employees to turn off their devices after work, allow flexible work hours, and promote personal and professional development opportunities.
Your employees are your company’s most important assets. Assist them in achieving their New Year’s resolutions when you implement these tips.
Feeling SAD At Work? Follow These Tips
According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, 14 to 20 percent of Americans suffer from
Seasonal Affective Disorder
(SAD). More women than men suffer from the disorder, and you’re more likely to develop the disorder as you age. Because SAD can affect your ability to work, learn how to overcome it this winter.
What is SAD?
Seasonal Affective Disorder occurs during the winter months when the days are shorter. It’s a form of clinical depression and affects your mood.
If you have SAD, you may experience numerous physical, emotional and cognitive symptoms that disrupt your life. These symptoms include:
Loss of interest in work, hobbies and other activities
Inability to function at work or home
Does Health Insurance Cover SAD Treatment?
You may use your health insurance to cover some of your SAD treatment. It will pay for your doctor visit and could also cover medication and medically necessary devices such as extra lights. You may need additional coverage to supplement time off work and other treatment options like dietary changes and exercise.
How is SAD Treated?
SAD affects everyone a bit differently, and you may experience mild to severe symptoms. See your doctor for an official diagnosis and treatment options that help you cope better with work and daily living tasks. Treatment options could include:
Diet - Increase your fruit and veggie intake, and reduce sweets, caffeine and alcohol as you fuel your body with healthy foods and combat anxiety and stress.
Exercise - Physical movement releases serotonin, your mood-boosting chemical, and relieves stress.
Lights - Increase your exposure to natural light and its mood-enhancing properties when you spend time outside, sit near a window or use a light box.
Medication - Antidepressants can relieve symptoms and help you cope with SAD.
Therapist - Work with a therapist and undergo cognitive behavioral therapy to address your specific symptoms, behaviors, attitude and thoughts.
SAD Treatment Options at Work
Talk to your boss about the SAD treatment options you can use at work. You may be able to walk outside during your breaks, move your desk closer to a window or place a lamp near your workstation. Ask if you can change your work hours, too, so you can take advantage of the daylight hours. Consider applying for the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) if necessary.
SAD is a serious condition that can affect your performance at work. However, you can treat it. Talk to your physician and boss about which SAD treatment options you can implement as you perform your job.
Benefits Of Group Life Insurance For Your Employees
Many companies offer group life insurance as part of their employee benefits package. It’s life insurance that’s only available to groups and costs less than an individual policy. If your company doesn’t offer this insurance option, consider the benefits of adding it.
Benefits for Employers
Attract Top Talent
A company’s benefits package is one of the major factors potential employees look for when they consider switching jobs. Offer group life insurance, and you set yourself apart from other employers as you entice quality employees to join your company.
Enhance Employee Security, Morale and Loyalty
Your employees want to know that you care about them, their families and their future. Group life insurance demonstrates your care and can prompt employees to feel secure working for you. As a result, they’ll experience higher morale and be more loyal to your company.
Group life insurance premiums are based on the collective risk of the company’s employees. Because the risk is spread around among multiple people, the overall rate is lower than an individual life insurance premium. That means you save money and can afford to offer this beneficial coverage to your employees.
Customize your Coverage
You can choose from a variety of different group life insurance policies for your employees. Consider if you’ll offer term or permanent life insurance, cover the premium cost or allow employees to pay for it, and add riders and other beneficial coverage to the policy. These factors and more allow you to create a group life insurance policy that meets the needs of your company and your employees.
Deduct the Premiums
You can deduct group life insurance premiums from your federal income tax return when the insurance is offered to all your employees. Your insurance agent can provide additional details.
Benefits for Employees
Protect Loved Ones
Give your employees peace of mind that they can provide financially for their loved ones even if something happens to them.
Group life insurance premiums are typically lower than individual life insurance policy premiums. Your employees will save money with this life insurance option.
Name or Change the Beneficiary Any Time
A beneficiary is the recipient of a life insurance policy’s death benefit. Employees can name the beneficiary of their choice for their group life insurance policy. They can also change the beneficiary at any time, allowing them to select a spouse, child or someone else to receive this important financial resource.
Group life insurance is beneficial for your company and employees. Talk to your insurance broker for more information and to add this valuable coverage to your benefits package.
Unemployment Benefits For Seasonal Layoffs
The slow winter season may lead certain employers to lay off employees for a few weeks or months. If you’re affected by a layoff, you could file for unemployment.
Understand this coverage and how to file for it so you can receive financial benefits as you wait to return to work.
What are Unemployment Benefits?
Most employers pay unemployment insurance so employees who lose their jobs or are laid off can receive temporary unemployment benefits. While your state administers the benefits, you are responsible to file a weekly claim for the benefits.
How to Qualify for Unemployment
Every state sets different guidelines for unemployment eligibility. Typically, you may receive benefits if you are laid off seasonally, and these benefits will last up to 26 weeks or until you return to work. However, you may need to meet certain employment qualifications. For example, in some states you must work for your employer for a certain number of weeks or earn a set income per month before you can apply for unemployment. You also must receive a W-2 from your employer, which means independent contractors or freelancers will not qualify for unemployment benefits.
Check with your Human Resources department to ensure you qualify for unemployment benefits. In most cases, you’ll receive details about your eligibility and information on how to file for benefits before your layoff starts.
How to File for Unemployment
It may take a week or longer to begin receiving unemployment benefits, so file a claim for benefits as soon as possible. You can sign up online or over the phone, and you will need your:
Social Security and driver license number
Complete mailing address and daytime phone number
Names and addresses of all employers from the last 18 months
Information from your W-2 form
After you file the initial claim, you will file for benefits weekly either online or through the automated phone system. Be prepared to answer questions about how many days you were willing and able to work that week. To continue receiving benefits, you also may need to prove that you’re actively looking for work even if you expect to be rehired in the near future.
Amount of Benefits you will Receive
Your state’s unemployment program and your job history affect the amount of unemployment benefits you receive. Typically, you can expect to receive up to half of your regular wages. Weekly benefits are capped, however, so you might earn less than half if you are a high-earner.
Unemployment benefits provide financial income if you’re laid off for a season from your job. Discuss your specific benefits with your Human Resources department to ensure you understand the specific benefits you can receive.
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