Vitality Research Provides Blueprint for Employers and Health Plans to Engage People in Their Health and Improve Their Well-being


To achieve results, organizations need to adopt a more rigorous definition of engagement for assessing success. Driving engagement requires the integration and use of intelligent incentives and benefits structures, leadership support, an effective communications strategy, and establishment of a strong well-being advocates network. These are among the findings of Vitality Group’s in-depth analysis of its client base.

“How engagement is defined is critical to measuring success,” said Tanya Little, Chief Commercial Officer for Vitality. “There currently isn’t a robust definition of engagement in the context of health and well-being programs, and most initiatives consider solely participation and frequency of interactions. At Vitality, we also consider the degree to which member participation achieves program goals, delivers sustainable engagement, and supports diversity and inclusivity to reach people regardless of demographic, social or health risk status.”

Vitality actuaries and data analysts studied client data to understand what drives higher levels of engagement in a population. The analysis offers the following insights:

  • Increasing incentive and benefits integrations and tying them deeper to program engagement was found to improve program registration by 7.5% and the percentage of highly engaged members by as much as 18.9%.
  • Leadership support was the most significant driver of the depth of engagement. When manager support improved from average to high, this corresponded to a 21% increase in member registration rates and an almost doubling (92%) in the percentage of registered members achieving Gold or Platinum Vitality Status.
  • Engaging members to serve as program “champions” generated a significant increase in engagement (34%) and corresponded to a 17.6% rise in the number of activities per member per month.
  • Targeted, sophisticated incentives are a powerful and necessary component of any successful program. Beyond driving engagement, Vitality’s data showed that in-program rewards levels drive program uptake and interest, improving registration rates by up to 12%.
  • Frequent and relevant communications were a significant driver of high levels of registration in the participation model, associated with an 11% increase in registration rates.

Additional details on the engagement white paper, including case studies featuring Baylor College of Medicine, E. & J. Gallo Winery, and Carhartt, can be found here.

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