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Case Study:

Howard County

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The Challenge Create a Well-Being Program to Engage Employees & Simplify Administration

Located in suburban Maryland, the Howard County Public School System consists of 76 elementary, middle, and high schools, and approximately 8,200 employees, including teachers, administrative, facilities and support staff. With an estimated 85 percent of HCPSS’ budget going toward salaries and benefits, HCPSS began exploring employee well-being programs to support all aspects of its employees’ health and help manage rising costs. For HCPSS, a robust approach to well-being that drove daily engagement and long-term healthy behavior change was key.

In 2010, Beverly Davis, Executive Director of Budget and Finance at HCPSS, began reviewing vendors, including Virgin Pulse, an online platform that fosters healthy daily habits and sustainable behavior change to help employees thrive at work and across all aspects of life. Some of HCPSS’ most important criteria for its new program were access to data and reporting, and means of tracking employee participation. It was also critical that the vendor it chose meaningfully and consistently engaged the school system’s diverse, physically disparate employee population.

  • “For both us and especially for employees, to have participation and rewards information available in one place on their Virgin Pulse portal is so much simpler and user-friendly.”

    - Beverly Davis Executive Director of Budget & Finance, Howard County Public School System

  • “That first summer we launched the Virgin Pulse program, the excitement and buzz was truly unbelievable. It’s become ‘cool’ to have your activity tracker on. If you don’t have it on, people will ask you why you aren’t doing it; it’s a culture change toward health.”

    - Beverly Davis Executive Director of Budget & Finance, Howard County Public School System

  • “Our definition of employee well-being has always been a holistic approach, but we’re incorporating more stress management techniques and financial fitness, along with nutrition and exercise components, as we become more aware of the importance of all the dimensions of wellness.”

    - Beverly Davis Executive Director of Budget & Finance, Howard County Public School System