Great River Energy ranked as 31st healthiest workplace

Great River Energy was recently honored on the list of 2014 Healthiest 100 Workplaces in America. GRE’s rank of 31st on the list is due to the company’s wellness initiatives.

The national award recognizes that Great River Energy has achieved remarkable and sustainable success through a broad range of corporate wellness programs and employee wellness initiatives.

GRE“We are very excited and proud of this great honor for the organization,” said Jason Vollbrecht, who oversees organization’s wellness programs. “It speaks volumes to Great River Energy’s commitment to a strong culture of health.”

GRE has always been committed to providing opportunities and resources to manage employees’ health, creating a healthier company culture and supporting wellness initiatives.

This recognition is the culmination of a highly selective, two-stage assessment process to include companies of all sizes from all regions and industries spanning the United States. The year-long assessment was conducted by Healthiest Employers. The Healthiest 100 have successfully implemented practical, effective and continuously improving corporate wellness strategies for creating a sustainably healthy workplace.

The GRE website states the company “offers wellness programs and solid benefits to help employees and their families live their best lives possible.”

According to Therese LaCanne, Manager of Corporate Communications at GRE, the company has two wellness committees — one in Minnesota and one in North Dakota — which meet regularly to plan activities and events to promote healthy lifestyles for employees.

“Some recent events include: Walk Across America, Get Produce, sponsorship programs, wellness walks and Weight Watchers at work,” LaCanne added.

Several GRE buildings also have on-site fitness, or wellness, centers. There is a trainer on-site three to four times a year to make sure employees and their families use the equipment safely, according to LaCanne.

“We also offer prizes for participation in wellness center challenges,” she said.

GRE has a long-term healthcare strategy. “A team, made up of employees from across the company, sets Great River Energy’s strategic healthcare goals,” LaCanne. “They meet two to three times a year to discuss additions and changes to our various healthcare plans. They work hard to keep healthcare costs down for employees and the organization by promoting various programs, such as our employee assistance program and courses around smoking cessation and care support (diabetes, cancer, diabetes and heart disease).”

LaCanne said GRE also offers employees a voluntary health management program where employees may received up to $1,000 for successful completion. The first phase of the program includes health a risk assessment and on-site screening. The second phase includes wellness events, appointments, health trackers and educational modules.

“We also regularly provide our employees with a newsletter about living healthy,” she added. “Recent articles have focused on generic drug utilization, consumerism, care support programs and preventive care.”

GRE is a not-for-profit cooperative which provides wholesale electric service to 28 distribution cooperatives in Minnesota and Wisconsin.