HERO, Mercer unveil Next Generation HERO Scorecard

Enhanced online tool and scoring reflect changing wellness best practices for large and small employers


United States, New York and Edina, Minn. – WEBWIRE – Tuesday, July 29, 2014

HERO and Mercer announced today the availability of the next generation of the HERO Employee Health Management Best Practices Scorecard in Collaboration with Mercer© (Version 4.0). The HERO Scorecard, which is available free of charge, allows employers to evaluate their employee health management efforts and to benchmark their program and outcomes against companies of similar sizes and industries.

According to HERO, the Scorecard survey has been enhanced to reflect the evolution of health management programs and new research on what drives optimal outcomes, as well as to improve consistency, accuracy and clarity of the tool by updating the user interface and wording of the survey questions.

“Over the last five years, the wellness industry and our health care system have changed significantly, as has our knowledge base. We can no longer judge wellness programs by the same standards we once did and what was once considered a best practice may no longer meet that standard,” said Jerry Noyce, president and CEO of HERO. “The significantly enhanced Scorecard reflects this, from the structure of the tool to the updated scoring system.”

For example, research has shown that financial incentives, while effective in encouraging the completion of simple activities are less effective in driving long-term behavior change. There is also greater understanding in the industry about the importance of leadership and organizational support for health. This has been reflected in how programs are scored in the new Scorecard. In addition, new best practices have been added to the Scorecard; for example, the use of new technologies such as mobile apps, social media, and wearable devices.

Since its launch in 2009, more than 1,200 employers completed the previous Scorecard Version 3.0, giving HERO and Mercer the ability to monitor broader employer wellness trends. As a result, HERO has published 18 commentaries analyzing data collected through the Scorecard. Findings have included:

·         Allowing spouses to participate in key elements of wellness programs improves participation and outcomes,

·         Small employers with high-performing programs can produce results that are comparable to those of large employers,

·         Biometric screenings to alert employees to possible health risks and personal coaching are two of the fastest-growing elements in health management programs, and

·         Employers using financial incentives report significantly higher participation in these programs than those not offering incentives.

“The HERO Scorecard has become an invaluable program assessment tool for employers and wellness providers, alike, and the magnitude of the database has given us the ability to test the relationships between specific best practices and outcomes, “ said Steven Noeldner, PhD, Mercer partner and chair of the HERO Research Study Subcommittee. “In addition, recent research showed a correlation between companies with high Scorecard values and health care cost savings.”

To learn more about the HERO Scorecard, visit http://www.the-hero.org/scorecard_folder/scorecard.htm.

Note for editors

The HERO Employee Health Management Best Practice Scorecard in Collaboration with Mercer© is available to organizations on a complimentary basis and may be accessed through www.the-hero.org, www.mercer.com or a Scorecard Partner organization. The survey must be completed online, but a PDF version is available that can be used as a teaching tool or to prepare for completing the online version. After an organization’s information and data have been submitted to the online HERO Scorecard, they will receive a free report that compares the score of their program with the aggregate score of all respondents.

About HERO

Based in Edina, Minn., the Health Enhancement Research Organization (HERO) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to the creation and dissemination of employee health management research, education, policy, strategy, and leadership. HERO was established in 1996 as a not-for-profit, 501(c)3 corporation to create high quality employee health management (EHM) research, especially that dealing with the impact of modifiable health risks on health care costs. To learn more, visit www.the-hero.org. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.

About Mercer

Mercer is a global leader in talent, health, retirement and investments. Mercer helps clients around the world advance the health, wealth and performance of their most vital asset – their people. Mercer’s 20,000 employees are based in more than 43 countries and the firm operates in over 130 countries. Mercer is a wholly owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies (NYSE: MMC), a global team of professional services companies offering clients advice and solutions in the areas of risk, strategy and human capital. With 55,000 employees worldwide and annual revenue exceeding $12 billion, Marsh & McLennan Companies is also the parent company of Marsh, a global leader in insurance broking and risk management; Guy Carpenter, a global leader in providing risk and reinsurance intermediary services; and Oliver Wyman, a global leader in management consulting. For more information, visit www.mercer.com. Follow Mercer on Twitter @MercerInsights.



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