Mercer | 2016 HERO Scorecard Progress Report - US

Mercer | 2016 HERO Scorecard Progress Report - US

New report from HERO, Mercer: Leadership, culture and communication are keys to success of employee well-being programs

  • October 10, 2016
  • United States, New York

Data from 2016 Progress Report for HERO Health and Well-being Best Practices Scorecard in Collaboration with Mercer© also shows lower employee turnover for high-scoring companies 

HERO and Mercer announced today the release of a new report that indicates leadership support, workplace culture, and effective communications strategy are keys to effective health and well-being programs. The report is based on an analysis of data from the HERO Health and Well-being Best Practices Scorecard in Collaboration with Mercer (HERO Scorecard). The analysis, which can be found in the 2016 HERO Scorecard Progress Report, also revealed a correlation between a high score on the HERO Scorecard and a lower employee attrition rate. The report reflects data from more than 500 U.S.-based employers who have completed the HERO Scorecard. 

The HERO Scorecard, which is free and available online in either a domestic or international version, allows employers to evaluate their health and well-being efforts by using a comprehensive inventory of current best practices compiled by industry thought leaders. The survey tool can be accessed through the HERO website ( Information on the new international version of the HERO Scorecard was presented during the HERO Forum on September 28. 

“Employers need an understanding of the strategies that have proven to be successful in building a culture of health and an effective well-being program. The 2016 HERO Scorecard Progress Report gives employers access to benchmarks, case studies, and trend analysis, which translates into insights and knowledge that can help them shape the right program for their workforce,” said Paul Terry, Ph.D. president and CEO of HERO.

Data from the 2016 HERO Scorecard Progress Report showed that:

  • 56 percent of HERO Scorecard participants have a formal strategic plan in place to support their wellness program (page 8);

  • In organizations that report the most improvement in health risks, 45 percent say leaders are role models for the program (page 9);

  • 58 percent of companies with the best health care cost outcomes offer some type of technology or wearable device (page 9);

  • 62 percent of respondents have a distinct brand for their wellness program (page 11); and

  • High-scoring companies reported employee turnover of 12 percent, compared to 15 percent in the medium-scoring group and 17 percent in the low-scoring group (page 12).


The HERO Scorecard asks employers to provide information about organizational and cultural support for employee health and well-being, specific program offerings, integration of health and well-being programs with other areas of the company, strategies to encourage participation (such as communications and rewards), program costs, and outcomes. After submitting the online scorecard, an employer receives best practice scores in six areas that contribute to employee well-being, along with benchmarks that show how they compare to national employers. 

“The HERO Scorecard has a five-year plus track record of producing data that demonstrate the impact best practices have on employee health and well-being,” said Steven Noeldner, Ph.D., Mercer partner and chair of the HERO Research Committee. “These include having a comprehensive strategy, leadership support at all levels, and the right mix of program activities and promotional strategies for a given employee population.” 

The 2016 HERO Scorecard Progress Report features commentaries on well-being trends from employers, researchers and wellness providers. Topics include: technology and engagement, wellness and corporate stock performance, wellness champion networks, the role of organizational support, going beyond physical health in wellness programs, effective wellness program strategy, and workplace culture. In addition, the 2016 HERO Scorecard Progress Report spotlights case studies from a few organizations that are making valuable use of the HERO Scorecard.  

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Note for editors

The HERO Health and Well-being Best Practices Scorecard in Collaboration with Mercer© is available to organizations on a complimentary basis and may be accessed through, or a HERO Scorecard Preferred Provider 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 completion of 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 not-for-profit, 501(c)3 corporation that was established in 1996. HERO is dedicated to identifying and sharing best practices that improve the health and well-being of workers, their spouses, dependents and retirees. To learn more, visit Follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn. 

About Mercer

Mercer is a global consulting leader in talent, health, retirement and investments. Mercer helps clients around the world advance the health, wealth and careers of their most vital asset – their people. Mercer’s more than 20,000 employees are based in 43 countries and the firm operates in over 140 countries.  Mercer is a wholly owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies (NYSE: MMC), a global professional services firm offering clients advice and solutions in the areas of risk, strategy and people. With annual revenue of $13 billion and 60,000 colleagues worldwide, Marsh & McLennan Companies is also the parent company of Marsh, a leader in insurance broking and risk management; Guy Carpenter, a leader in providing risk and reinsurance intermediary services; and Oliver Wyman, a leader in management consulting. For more information, visit Follow Mercer on Twitter @Mercer.