How Los Angeles World Airports’ virtual well-being program resulted in increased job satisfaction

The data show high levels of participation in the virtual offerings and significant stress reduction, winning Los Angeles World Airports recognition for an Outstanding Wellness Program (Large Organization) in Ragan’s Workplace Wellness Awards.

By Tony Silber      

Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) is the department of the City of Los Angeles that operates Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Van Nuys Airport (VNY). LAX is the third largest airport in the world, a place of daily stress, operating around the clock, with millions of travelers. Los Angeles World Airports needed a comprehensive wellness strategy to support the physical, mental and emotional well-being of LAWA employees, including at neighboring airports. It partnered with Balance by Nature, an award-winning employee wellness company, four years ago to support employees in creating a healthier work life balance and achieving positive health outcomes.

Once the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the program changed dramatically. The onsite wellness model was cancelled. The program focus shifted to keeping LAWA’s remote employees engaged in physical activity while working from home. The well-being provider successfully took the entire program online in 30 days.

The goals for 2020 were to get 10% participation in live-streamed events and through an online wellness portal, and to reduce reported stress levels by a minimum of 50% after participating in wellness classes. The wellness partner created a virtual gym where employees could participate in a variety of weekly live-streamed fitness classes. There were monthly food demonstrations and cooking classes, as well as weekly live-stream meditation and breathwork classes, and inspirational wellness talks on personal development topics.

The success of the program was indicated in the numbers. Over 800 employees participated in the virtual wellness experiences, which translates to 23% of the employee population. The goal of 10% participation was exceeded by double. Stress reduction polls at the start and end of fitness classes yielded a 90% reduction in stress levels. Employees also reported that the wellness programs positively affected their mental well-being, morale, and job satisfaction rose by over 60%.

LAWA is preparing to innovate with their wellness program once more, as they will be launching Balance by Nature’s new Wellness Studio TV Channel, which will allow their employees to engage with the live classes, video on demand, and special wellness series through branded TV apps, mobile apps, and even an Apple Watch Fitness app!