Maximizing Employee Engagement with Whil and Virgin Pulse (New Report Findings)

By Bo Steiner

Our partner Virgin Pulse just released their 4th annual State of the Industry survey. After interviewing over 1,000 HR leaders, they’ve revealed the biggest roadblock to improving employee engagement. Drumroll, please… it’s culture.

We’ve highlighted our key takeaways from the report below, along with how Whil maps to each of them, helping HR reach their 2018 goals. We’re also providing a link to the full report to see the goodness in its entirety.

The top priority for HR this year is recruiting/retention, as is changing culture. It’s key to achieving all of their other priorities, as a differentiator for recruiting and retaining talent. This includes driving employee engagement and wellbeing. Three-quarters of HR departments have been tasked with changing their workplace culture. A majority of organizations say their existing culture is the main roadblock stifling engagement efforts. Whil’s training supports improved culture through emotional intelligence (EQ), resilience, and targeted career-wellbeing training. Each of these translate to employees who are more mindful, present and connected. In fact, 93% say Whil helps them meet their wellbeing, performance and company culture goals. And having healthier and happier employees translates to higher job satisfaction and retention.

Global organizations are generally more mature in their engagement efforts and are more concerned with specialized communications by segment (location, business unit, etc.). Whil offers career-specific programs, the ability to segment dashboard reporting, and communication support from our customer success team.  

Most organizations consider their wellbeing programs "immature" and have little to no measurement of engagement. We’re proud to share that 86% of Whil customers view our team as trusted advisors regarding corporate wellness solutions and best practices.

The report also states that wellbeing should be part of the work culture and engagement efforts. According to the Virgin Pulse study, a whopping 90% of employees believe that their work wellbeing programs positively affect work culture. Only 53% of organizations currently invest in wellbeing as part of their engagement strategy as most organizations are still growing their engagement and wellbeing programs. Global organizations seem to be more mature in this aspect. 62% of them say they are intermediate or advanced, compared to only 41% of organizations only in the U.S. Just like Whil’s clients around the world, these global organizations are also more likely to personalize engagement efforts by segment (location, business line and career/talent segment).

If you’re wondering what the best practices that mature organizations use for effective engagement programs are, look no further. In short:

    • Have a strong mission and values, and make it part of everything employees do, to shape a strong culture
    • Tie engagement efforts to organizational strategy, make employee health a priority, secure sufficient budget and identify an executive sponsor who is bought in
    • Measure engagement (NPS, retention data, engagement surveys) and track by segment
    • Personalize engagement efforts by segments
    • Identify employees pain points and address those first (surveys, 360 reviews, exit interviews)
    • Incorporate wellbeing into their engagement efforts

Thirsty for more? Download the full report!


Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash


Posted by Bo Steiner- 20 October, 2018

Bo is a Success Lead at Whil and is passionate about helping Whil’s partners and customers reach and exceed their wellbeing, performance and company culture goals. She loves to explore new cities and restaurants, watch USC Football, and she treats her dog, Russell, like a spoiled human child.