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36 Health management at unilever – return on investment: the unilever singapore lamplighter program (2009 – 2015)
  1. N Guharajan
  1. Unilever Asia Pte Ltd, Singapore


Introduction Lamplighter is Unilever’s global health, well-being and performance program. Our vision is a culture in which employees and their families actively seek to embrace health and wellbeing. Lamplighter is an organisational well-being program designed to improve the health, wellbeing and performance of Unilever employees over a six to twelve month period by focusing on three main areas; exercise, nutrition and mental resilience. Led by the Medical and Occupational Health division, the Lamplighter program is fully integrated into Unilever’s multi-national, multi-local activities to ensure that Health and Wellbeing initiatives reach across the business.

Methods Using a Unilever designed Health Risk Questionnaire, information is collected on the prevalence of specific health risk factors. A 3rd party administered ROI (Return on Investment) tool that can measure medical and productivity risk factor costs coupled with risk prevalence of specific health risk factors, overall program costs and employee median annual compensation is used to generate the ROI. Four specific outputs are demonstrated: medical only, absenteeism only, presentism only, and overall ROI (medical and productivity combined).

Results 6 Year Aggregate (2009 through 2015): Unilever-Singapore healthcare cost return-on-investment (ROI) for the participant sample over the span of 6 periods was found to be 1.72: 1. When looking at the ROI for productivity the ratio is 0.48: 1 for absenteeism, and 1.30: 1 for presentism. When healthcare and productivity savings are combined the ratio is 3.50: 1.

Discussion The Unilever Singapore program came into existence in 2009. Since then we have been able to demonstrate reduction in the prevalence of health risk factors while also showing a positive Return on Investment over the 6 year period. The findings indicate that our program is heading in the right direction and showing a positive impact on employee health and related health costs.

  • Occupational Health
  • Productivity
  • Health Costs

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