Over the past year, we have heard many stories of individuals and companies that have endured and overcome unexpected hardships. We are especially inspired by those of you who have stuck with your commitment to the well-being of your employees, and continue to provide resources to support physical, mental, emotional and financial health.
After reviewing many impressive applications, we finally narrowed down our selections to those we felt went above and beyond in caring for the health of their employees in 2021. We want to recognize and appreciate the effort and creativity that went into implementing these programs that support happier and healthier lives.
Charleston Region Winner: Sonepar Management
Sonepar Management impressed us right out of the gate with its fulfillment of all four healthy workplace basics: a tobacco-free workplace, sponsored health screenings, flu shots and an annual health survey. Educational materials that go out to their employees on a quarterly basis focus on things like preventive care and mental well-being. There are on-site gyms at several facilities, as well as a gym membership reimbursement program. Sonepar also has a point system that rewards employees who make healthy food choices.
Sonepar’s robust incentive program is impressive. Participation in their wellness program can earn employees a lower annual deductible, HRA dollars and shopping mall rewards. The company also supports mental well-being and stress management through its EAP program and utilization of Blue CareOnDemandSM. Thanks to these programs and incentives, Sonepar has seen an incredible savings of over $700,000 related to improved productivity and fewer lost work days.
Greenville Region Winner: Founders Federal Credit Union
Founders Federal went above and beyond in communicating healthy and safe practices for employees at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and throughout the year. It provided information via its employee self-service site about the importance of physical education, and negotiated discounts with local gyms and yoga studios. At Founders’ corporate office, they brought in personal trainers to teach classes and masseuses to offer chair massages.
During the spring of 2021, Founders purchased lunch every day for all employees who continued to work on site. This gave employees access to healthy lunch options without having to leave the office. Recently, Founders upgraded vending machines to offer healthier and more varied snack choices.
Founders offers a wellness program called “Fit Founders” that supports a holistic approach to health. A special feature of their program is the Founders Employee fund, which was established to provide financial assistance to employees who have experienced hardships due to events such as natural disasters, extended illnesses or injuries, and other challenging circumstances.
Midlands Region Winner: M. B. Kahn Construction
M. B. Kahn continues to impress with its wellness initiatives year after year. Company leaders are committed to implementing all aspects of wellness into their corporate culture. They communicate these values to employees through educational campaigns that include mental health awareness, and by offering lunch and learns that focus on stress and time management. Last year, they focused specifically on heart health and developed a fundraiser to support those affected by heart disease.
M. B. Kahn also offers some great fitness challenges for employees to participate in throughout the year. Last year they hosted a virtual 5K and a monthlong “Wellness Wednesday Challenge.” Options were provided for employees of all abilities. Healthy eating is promoted through resources such as the “M. B. Kahn Cookbook of Family Recipes,” which offers helpful nutrition information. Also, nutritious snack options are provided on site.
M. B. Kahn has seen some impressive results thanks to its wellness efforts and incentives. Wellness program participation increased 100% from year one to year two, and there is consistently positive feedback from employees.
Overall Winner: Red Ventures, LLC
For 2021, BlueCross would like to recognize Red Ventures as the overall winner of the LiveLifeBlue Awards. The company’s extensive wellness program includes state-of-the-art fitness centers, a host of fitness classes to choose from and a high priority on mental wellness. Last fall, Red Ventures provided 12 free therapy sessions to all employees through Lyra Health, plus a 12-week mental wellness education and awareness initiative. The company continues to provide employees with educational resources on physical and mental well-being.
Red Ventures provides healthy on-site dining options at affordable prices, along with free nutritional guidance to employees with BlueCross coverage. The company incentivizes employees for participating in healthy behavior through programs such as a companywide Movement Challenge. Winners of the competition were awarded health-related prizes such as a Peloton bike, an ergonomic office chair and a standing desk.
Red Ventures developed and launched the “RV Parent & Caregiver Support Guide,” which offered scheduling plans for employees balancing caregiver duties in addition to their workload. Also included is an employee assistance fund, a mental wellness resource library, and an on-site health clinic charging only $5 a visit for employees and their families. Congratulations to Red Ventures for its outstanding wellness accomplishments for 2021!