2023

Healthy Workplace Index

The Healthy Workplace Index identifies the US states that promote optimal workplace well-being in 2023 through 4 core pillars: workplace policies and regulations, work-life balance, health and wellness, and environmental factors.

This study aims to highlight the need for greater workplace parity based on location and suggest actionable improvements for workplaces in each state.

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Methodology

The 2023 Workplace Index estimates how sustainable workplaces are in each of the 50 US states. It is based on 4 main areas: workplace policies and regulations, work-life balance, health and wellness, and environmental factors. These areas consist of 20 smaller elements, all of which add up to an overall score for each state’s Healthy Workplace Index.

The final state ranking was determined by calculating the sum of the state subscores. A state with a higher index score is considered a finer state in terms of employment compared to other states.

4 pillars of the Healthy Workplace Index

Workplace policies and regulations
Smoking policies
High levels of smoking management policies
Smoking policies protect workers from the health hazards of secondhand smoke, which is known to cause various respiratory and cardiovascular issues. Implementing robust smoking management policies, such as smoke-free environments and smoking cessation programs, promotes a healthier workplace, reduces the health risks associated with smoking, and encourages employees to quit smoking.
Binge drinking
Low levels of binge drinking
Binge drinking can negatively affect employees' ability to work and their overall health and well-being, both in the short and long term. Low levels of binge drinking in the workplace contribute to a safer, healthier work environment, reduce the risk of alcohol-related accidents or incidents, and help employees maintain good physical and mental health.
Accident reporting
Strict accident reporting time deadlines
Timely incident reporting allows employers to more effectively address safety hazards and prevent future accidents. By setting strict reporting deadlines, employers can quickly investigate the causes of accidents, take corrective action, and ensure the well-being of employees. Meeting reporting deadlines helps employers maintain accurate records of workplace incidents, which is essential for tracking trends and identifying areas for improvement.
OSHA-approved plan
Implementation of an OSHA-approved state plan
By following an OSHA-approved state plan, employers contribute to a healthy workplace by reducing the risk of work-related injuries and illnesses, fostering a culture of safety, and promoting employee well-being. Compliance with these state plans helps create a safer and more productive work environment, which, in turn, benefits both employers and employees.
Fatal work injuries
Low levels of fatal work injuries
A high rate of fatal work injuries indicates a lack of safety measures and a potentially hazardous work environment. By reducing the incidence of fatal work injuries, employers can create a work environment that promotes employee well-being and reduces costs associated with work-related injuries and illnesses.
Annual wage
High annual wages
Higher wages can lead to improved employee well-being by helping alleviate financial stress and enabling employees to maintain a better work-life balance. Fair and competitive wages also contribute to employee satisfaction and can help attract and retain top talent, ultimately creating a more positive work environment.
Work-life balance
EAP
Implementation of Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)
Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) are linked to a healthy workplace by helping employees deal with personal issues that can ultimately affect their work performance and overall well-being. Through counseling and consultation services, EAPs address emotional and mental health issues and improve work-life management and workplace interactions.
Great Place To Work-Certified™
High number of Great Place To Work-Certified™ companies
The Great Place to Work certification recognizes employers who provide an outstanding employee experience and cultivate a positive culture through employee feedback and independent analysis. Certified companies tend to have high employee engagement, motivation, and retention rates, which contribute to a healthy work environment.
Work on-site
Work on-site
Long workdays combined with depression and anxiety can lead to sleep deprivation, which can be a significant hazard, especially on construction sites. Employers should consider mental health as part of a holistic on-site return plan to mitigate potential stress and anxiety for their workers.
Paid family leave
Access to paid family leave
Paid family leave contributes to employees' overall well-being and work-life balance, which, in turn, positively affects their job performance and satisfaction. Offering paid family leave demonstrates a company's commitment to supporting employees during important life events, which increases loyalty and reduces turnover.
Average employee share of premium
High average employee share of premium
The average employee share of premium influences employees' decision to participate in employer-sponsored health plans. When the employee share of the cost is lower, a higher proportion of employees want to participate in these programs.
Health and wellness
Flu vaccination (%)
High prominence of flu vaccination (%)
Flu vaccinations play a critical role in maintaining a healthy workplace by reducing absenteeism, improving employee health, and promoting a positive work environment.
Screening recommendations
State-wide health screening recommendations
Employee health screenings contribute to a healthy workplace by promoting early detection of health issues, thereby reducing absenteeism, promoting employee well-being, encouraging healthy habits, improving workplace safety, and increasing productivity.
Annual child care costs
Low annual child care costs
Investing in child and elder care for employees can have a significant positive impact on a healthy workplace. It can reduce stress, improve work-life balance, increase retention, improve productivity, and contribute to a positive workplace culture. By recognizing and addressing the needs of employees with caregiving responsibilities, companies can create a more supportive and healthier work environment.
Poor physical health days
Access to physical health days
Offering access to physical health days encourages employees to take time off for physical well-being activities such as exercise, medical screenings, and preventive care, resulting in improved physical health and reduced long-term healthcare costs.
Poor mental health days
Access to mental health days
By having access to mental health days, employees can focus on their mental well-being, reduce stress, promote work-life balance, and increase overall mental health and job satisfaction. This is a great way to prevent employee burnout.
Annual elder care costs
Low annual elder care costs
Investing in child and elder care for employees can have a significant positive impact on a healthy workplace. It can reduce stress, improve work-life balance, increase retention, improve productivity, and contribute to a positive workplace culture. By recognizing and addressing the needs of employees with caregiving responsibilities, companies can create a more supportive and healthier work environment.
Environmental factors
Air pollution
Low air pollution
Employee exposure to air pollution can have a negative impact on physical and cognitive performance. Good air quality helps counteract this by providing numerous health benefits, including increased productivity, improved comfort, reduced absenteeism, improved mental health, and increased employee retention.
Energy efficiency
High energy efficiency and percentage of power produced by renewable sources
Energy efficiency and the percentage of power generated from renewable sources are related to a healthy workplace by fostering improved indoor air quality, thermal comfort, natural lighting, lower noise pollution, and overall sustainability. These elements lead to a more pleasant and productive work environment.
Percentage of power produced by renewable sources
High energy efficiency and percentage of power produced by renewable sources
Energy efficiency and the percentage of power generated from renewable sources are related to a healthy workplace by fostering improved indoor air quality, thermal comfort, natural lighting, lower noise pollution, and overall sustainability. These elements lead to a more pleasant and productive work environment.

Each factor consists of one or more indicators that were scored and averaged. The equation for scoring is as follows:

For columns where a low value is better, the score is inverted so that a high score is always better:

The obtained z score data set is normalized to a [0–5] scale, with 5 being the best score. Therefore, the higher the score, the better the state ranks compared to other states.

The formula used to normalize the data is min-max normalization:

The final score was determined by calculating the sum of the state subscores:

Workplace location and inequality

The average person spends approximately 90,000 hours at work during their lifetime, which is equivalent to 3,750 days or one-third of our total working days. However, according to the Healthy Workplace Index, workers in certain states in the US can experience working conditions that are 50% worse than those in other states.

Inequality remains a pervasive concern across all US states, seeping into every aspect of life, including the workplace. However, since a significant portion of our lives is dedicated to work, the consequences of workplace health inequality hold a substantial influence over every American, posing significant challenges to their well-being. Consequently, individuals face various health issues and directly encounter the inequality from contrasting work environments and conditions.

The issues can be addressed and tackled in a variety of settings, including the personal, labor, and governmental realms.

Our study identified 20 critical factors within these environments that are often overlooked but contribute to workplace disparities across states. These factors include time limits for reporting accidents, wages, employee health screenings, air pollution, and several other distinctive measures.

As a global leader in digital health and wellness with a mission to help people live healthier, longer, more active lives, Kilo Health was inspired to conduct its own study of healthy workplaces in the US and outline solutions to workplace inequality for each state.

Top 5 states for a healthy workspace

1st
100 points
New York
New York

Final ranking: 1st
Annual wage: 5
Percentage of power produced by renewable sources: 0.469

2nd
99.93 points
California
California

Final ranking: 2nd
OSHA-approved state plan: 5
Air Pollution: 0

3rd
98.11 points
New Jersey
New Jersey

Final ranking: 3rd
Smoking policies: 5
Percentage of power produced by renewable sources: 0.226 ❌

4th
96.01 points
Washington
Washington

Final ranking: 4th
Average employee share of premium: 5
Screening recommendations: 0 ❌

5th
94.85 points
Oregon
Oregon

Final ranking: 5th
Accident reporting time deadlines: 5
Great Place To Work-Certified™ Companies: 0.153 ❌

Worst 5 states for a healthy workspace

50th
50 points
West Virginia
West Virginia

Final ranking: 50th
Accident reporting time deadlines: 5
Poor mental health days: 0 ❌

49th
53.92 points
Alabama
Alabama

Final ranking: 49th
EAP: 5
Smoking policies: 0 ❌

48th
54.85 points
Arkansas
Arkansas

Final ranking: 48th
Accident reporting time deadlines: 5
Binge Drinking: 0

47th
58.87 points
Missouri
Missouri

Final ranking: 47th
EAP: 5
Paid family leave: 0

46th
58.89 points
Mississippi
Mississippi

Final ranking: 46th
Work Onsite: 5
Average employee share of premium: 0 ❌

“The Health and Wellness category received a low score of less than 50 points in 54% of the states. The Screening Recommendations category was inferior, indicating a need for improvement in employee health screenings. Such screenings can benefit workplaces in several ways, including early detection of health problems, reducing absenteeism, promoting employee well-being and healthy habits, improving workplace safety, and increasing productivity.”

Kristina Zalnieraite

Head of Nutrition and Wellness at Kilo Health

“It’s all about the people – healthy employees are the foundation of a successful business. By investing in workplace wellness programs, companies can improve the health and well-being of their employees and increase productivity and engagement.”

Romy Carlson

CCO at Kilo Health

2023 Healthy Workplace Index by state

Ranking State Index
1. New York 100
2. California 99.93856204
3. New Jersey 98.1158549
4. Washington 96.01570068
5. Oregon 94.85841797
6. Maryland 94.2595124
7. Colorado 92.72823749
8. New Mexico 92.4095621
9. Maine 89.53322249
10. Vermont 89.31206558
11. Hawaii 89.29951301
12. Massachusetts 88.84267882
13. North Carolina 88.25572555
14. Utah 87.78498631
15. Wisconsin 87.02036473
16. Arizona 86.41774181
17. Iowa 86.34736672
18. Minnesota 86.1859652
19. North Dakota 85.68872575
20. Michigan 85.26419252
21. Illinois 84.14684974
22. South Dakota 83.95021921
23. Rhode Island 83.72295669
24. Connecticut 83.37166198
25. Virginia 82.63269893
26. Kansas 80.99483762
27. Nebraska 80.2428494
28. Montana 80.22937362
29. Tennessee 77.90356667
30. Kentucky 77.66108224
31. Indiana 77.26440802
32. Delaware 76.0080051
33. Ohio 74.8674578
34. Louisiana 73.01689652
35. New Hampshire 72.2840208
36. Pennsylvania 71.65594005
37. Florida 69.9265152
38. South Carolina 68.25644576
39. Nevada 67.49990865
40. Alaska 63.79714456
41. Georgia 62.21958708
42. Oklahoma 61.97191175
43. Texas 60.64664072
44. Idaho 60.55331791
45. Wyoming 60.41359871
46. Mississippi 58.89265156
47. Missouri 58.87296167
48. Arkansas 54.85818993
49. Alabama 53.92540381
50. West Virginia 50

Meet the experts

Kristina Žalnieraitė

Head of Nutrition & Wellness

Ilona Bernotaitė

Chief People Officer

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