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Program Design

The focus of a workforce health promotion (WHP) program can vary due to many factors, including type of organization, workforce diversity, resources, and leadership support. Program design provides an opportunity to plan a WHP program and position it within the organization's overall mission. This increases the potential that program objectives will be realized, such as improving employee health and productivity and reducing medical care expenses for the employer and employee.

This Web site serves to introduce certain concepts, provide resources for more detailed information on program design, and link program planners to practical resources. It is not intended to serve as a definitive text on designing and implementing WHP programs.

This section is organized into four broad categories of program design activities:


These activities involve setting objectives and goals for the WHP program that are in harmony with an organization's unique mission.

Planning 101
Overview of the importance of program planning and important attributes of a comprehensive WHP program.

Funding Opportunities for WHP
Limited funding is often one of the biggest challenges facing new and existing WHP programs. Funding for your program may be available through various government, research, and philanthropic organizations.

Logic Models
Tools that can be used to reach consensus on goals and objectives, and incorporate the vision of management and employees into a roadmap for the WHP program.

Planning Resources
Publications that provide guidance on overall WHP, including planning tools, program guides, and health data.

Needs Assessment

needs assessmentThese activities involve assessing employee needs and interests, the workplace environment, and available resources. When selecting needs assessment tools, be aware that many tools assess topics from more than one of the categories described below.

Needs Assessment 101
Overview of needs assessment activities and examples of tools that can assist WHP planners.

Employee Input
There are many ways to ask employees about their needs and interests, including through an informal employee feedback box, wellness committees, or formalized surveys.

Cost Calculators
Tools that help employers estimate the costs of lifestyle factors and preventable diseases for their employees. These cost estimates can be used to justify WHP programs.

Environmental Audits
Questionnaires that assess aspects of the physical work environment, such as access to nutritional foods and opportunities for physical activity.


These activities involve setting WHP priorities, designing program practices, assigning resources, and developing an implementation plan.

Implementation Resources
Publications that can provide guidance and tools for use when planning, designing, and implementing program practices.

This page provides information on continuing education for WHP staff and selecting WHP vendors.

Continuing Education in WHP
This section provides information on the many opportunities that are available to expand the skills and knowledge of your WHP staff on topics such as employee wellness, fitness, health benefits, and productivity.


These activities involve analyzing the results achieved in the WHP program, determining if they meet goals and objectives, and identifying what was successful and what needs to be improved. Evaluation is not a one-time action but should be an ongoing activity in health promotion programs.

Award Opportunities in WHP
Anyone who wants to seek recognition for their organization's WHP program can find information here on award opportunities offered by a broad range of organizations and agencies.

Evaluation Resources
Publications that can provide guidance on evaluation activities.

Swift Worksite Assessment and Translation
This evaluation method can help to identify promising practices in worksite health promotion programs that promote healthy weight of working adults.

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Healthier Worksite Initiative
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