myWell-Being: Making Wellness Fun and Saving Lives

“myWell-Being” has been the umbrella for Hershey’s wellness strategy since 2012. This includes the incentive- and non-incentive portions of the myWell-Being Program, Corporate Fitness Center programs, Faces of myWell-Being, and programs offered through Health Services.

You’ll find information on the following programs and communications on this page:

The myWell-Being Program, the myWell-Being Incentive Program


On an emotional level, participation in the myWell-Being Program saves lives. With portions of the program administered by Healthways, the myWell-Being Program promotes completion of a yearly well-being assessment and getting recommended preventive screenings through a variety of programs and activities for eligible participants in the U.S. with an intended rollout of similar programs to Canada and Mexico in 2014 . I have since learned that the rollout to Canada and Mexico was cancelled.

2014 Goals

  • 30% participation in the Well-Being Assessment
  • 30% participation in preventive exams
  • Achieve 50% employee satisfaction scores

The myWell-Being Program year runs January 1 through November 31. Incentive-eligible employees and their spouses, domestic partners, and eligible dependents could earn up to $600 (individual) or $1,000 (family) per program year.

Using employee feedback, the myWell-Being Program improved upon Hershey’s previous wellness-incentive programs by

  • Paying incentives as they are earned
  • Allowing participants to select which activities and programs they want and earn incentives based on their level of participation
  • Including participants not enrolled in a Hershey medical plan
  • Expanding eligibility to employees groups not previously covered


JNC Role: I sat on the myWell-Being core team, writing and designing approximately 50% of content since 2012, and customizing or adapting the remaining 50% for Hershey’s use. I played a significant role in editing the collateral received from Healthways to ensure that it accurately reflected the myWell-Being Program eligibility and requirements. I crafted a yearly communication plan and executed those launched through myHR Communications. I guided my clients (the myWell-Being team) to take a goal-oriented, metrics-driven approach to communicating the program resulting in a concentrated focus on driving participants to the well-being assessment and preventive screenings.

Screen shot of the myWell-Being page.

Screen shot of the myWell-Being page.

One of the complex tasks I undertook involved stepping in for the Wellness team and redesigning the (myHR website) myWell-Being page to make content easier to find and reviewed the and the websites to ensure consistent use of program and incentive names. I also revised and/or created resource documents for each incentive, program, and/or activity within the myWell-Being Program that were then made available on all three program websites.

An example is the myWell‐Being Preventive Screenings, Checklist and Incentive Program resource document.

With a font change, adding bold formatting, ignoring spell check, and undoing the auto-capitalization at the start of a sentence, the "myWell-Being" word branding was a PITA. On a humorous creative note, the branding for “myWell-Being” was designed with the “my” being in a different font (Bradley Hand ITC) from the rest of the name to put emphasis on “my” as representative of ownership of your own well-being. As this is a light font, it has to be bolded – otherwise it appears faded compared to the rest of the word. There’s a whole lot of formatting changes, ignoring spell checks, undoing auto-capitalizations at the start of sentences, etc., going on here. So you resort to typing once and then copying and pasting and going back to check that you used the correct font size. Repeat after me, “PITA!” Let me know if you need an explanation for this acronym.

You will find communication samples among the specific programs below.

Audience: Eligibility is complex, varying by location and employee type, due to myWell-Being containing an amalgamation of pre-existing and new programs all with their own eligibility making it difficult for the administrators and participants to keep straight., I created a four-page reference document that cross-referenced every program and activity with participant type with eligibility status.


Available results are for program years 2012 and 2013.

  • Employee completion of the well-being assessment rose from 34% in 2012 to 47% in 2013, exceeding the 2012 goal by 14% and the 2013 goal by 17%
  • Achieved year 1 (2012) ROI goal of $1.47 via a 14.6% reduction in medical risk through a net reduction in 10 of 12 measured risk factors. 2013 ROI data was not available as of March 2014
  • Exceeded 2013 employee-satisfaction scores by 13.16% to 63.16%, up 9.5% over 2012


While meeting the yearly goals, the team and I faced numerous challenges that reduced the impact of the program.

  • HR senior leadership limited how and when programs could be communicated
  • With reduced communication opportunities and funding, there were few alternatives available for reaching participants

Both of these made it difficult to get as much information to program participants as they wanted and needed.

  • Senior corporate leadership did not participate in the program, despite efforts to engage them

Senior leaders received guidance on the direct correlation between reducing health risks and increased engagement, productivity, and profits, yet the program did not receive the support it merited. With increased senior-level engagement, the team and I agreed that results would be higher. While suggested by our team, the vendor, and consultants that leaders be accountable for their participation and that of their direct reports in their performance scores, there was no support for this within the company culture. Participation varied by plant location with Robinson, Illinois, and Memphis, Tennessee, getting highly engaged with the help of their plant HR staff and plant leadership. Field Sales “fielded” pockets of high engagement.

myWell-Being Core Team

The myWell-Being Core Team was led by Jeannie Tomlinson (former Director, Wellness & Health Services). Other members includes Jamie McGlaughlin, Renee Karstetter, and me.

Making Wellness Fun: Introducing the myWell-Being Program e-Magazine


Hershey used an interactive e-Magazine for the first time to launch the 2014 myWell-Being Program intending to increase participation in the program and meet the 2014 goals.


The e-Magazine was built and designed by Towers Watson.

JNC role: I contributed major site revisions and content. I wrote the scripts for the videos, produced and edited them, provided the audio and music bed, and appeared in one of them (I’m leading the dancing in the flash mob). The videos were created on a basic version of Movie Maker with a very tight two-week turnaround. As these were my first videos to produce, I taught myself the needed skills and created the videos in that two-week period.

I designed and wrote the content for the postcards and myHR News complementary communications. In keeping with the HR Communications strategy, the myHR News and complementary communications drove employees to the myHR website to access the e-Magazine link.

myWB e-Mag graphic

myWell-Being e-Magazine: This is a preview link of the e-Magazine so that hits don’t affect website data tracking. The e-Magazine had a soft go-live on March 4, 2014; postcards were mailed on March 7 to all participants promoting the myWell-Being quiz located inside the e-Magazine (FitBits given away as random prizes).

myHR News (March 2014)


Digital screen

There’s Still Time: Are You Throwing Money Away?


The goal of the annual “There’s Still time” communication campaign was to increase participation during the final month of the program year by raising awareness of the following:

  • The upcoming incentive deadline
  • How to determine which programs were completed
  • How to determine the incentive remaining
  • Which incentive programs could be completed before the deadline


JNC role: I designed all communications associated with the “There’s Still Time” campaigns.

Audience: U.S. full-time hourly and salaried (except Mauna Loa hourly), CPTs, U.S. expats

In keeping with the HR Communications strategy, the myHR News and 2013 complementary communications drove employees to the myHR website to read the full article (website posting).

There's Still Time 2013-11 Graphic
myHR website posting: This article (myHR website posting) contained all the information employees needed to maximize their incentive before the program year ended.

myHR News (November 2014)


Digital screen

Faces of myWell-Being


I created and launched the “Faces” program in 2012 to engage employees in the myWell-Being Program and promote Hershey’s wellness and benefit programs and goals in a genuine and inspiring manner.

The “Faces” were average Hershey employees – not models – who were willing to share their wellness journeys. These profiles were very personal and stirring. Faces could be nominated by other employees, by plant employee relations staff, Corporate Fitness Center staff, or by me.


JNC role: I wrote and designed all communications associated with the “Faces” campaigns. Each Face campaign included an interview profile posted on the website, featured in the myHR News, posters, and digital screens. Not all communications for each Face below were available for posting here.

Audience: This was one of the few programs available to all employees.

Carver Feature
Beverly Carver, Robinson Plant, Robinson, IL, April 2013 Face of myWell-Being

myHR website profile

Lisa Ricords, November 2013 Face of myWell-Being, credits having positive people in her life with feeling comfortable enough to try new activities like dancing and skiing.

Lisa Ricords, Hershey, PA, November 2013 Face of myWell-Being

myHR website profile  (video not available for viewing as it is located on a Hershey internal website)

Digital screen


November 2013 myHR News

Gerardo Villarreal Buentello, Monterrey, Mexico, April 2013 Face of myWell-Being.

Gerardo was my first Face outside of the United States.

Digital screen


Conway Faces Photo
Jennifer Conway, Hershey, PA, June 2012 Face of myWell-Being.

Yes, that’s me. When I presented the “Faces” concept to the Director, Wellness, she loved the idea and quickly suggested that I profile my wellness journey as one of the Faces.

myHR website profile

Digital screen


2013 Face of myWB 2013-11 Feature
 2013 Faces of myWell-Being Contest

Each year, I ran a contest on the myHR website to vote for that year’s “Face of myWell-Being.” Employees voted on the employee whose wellness journey most inspired them. The winner received a US$250 gift card, and each contestant received a US$25 gift card and a copy of their poster or digital screen covered in acrylic suitable for displaying in their cubicles. The posting on the myHR website included a link that jumped to a Websurveyor site, which I set up, for the actual voting.

myHR website profile

Digital screen


myHR News (November 2013)


Based on the 2013 myWell-Being employee survey, readership was up 11.41% in all channels. The profiles posted on had the highest satisfaction rating at 82.98%.

Two things more accurately reflected the success of the “Faces of myWell-Being” program:

  • Engagement: Employees talked about the Faces with each other, with me, and sent feedback via email complimenting the program. Several employees crediting reading the Faces profiles with getting needed preventive exams or inspiring them to start their own weight-loss, fitness, and tobacco-cessation journeys
  • Program spikes: Whenever a Hershey benefit program was mentioned in a Faces profile, program administrators reported a spike in activity (website hits, call center requests, program enrollments, etc.)

Not only was this my “baby,” but I felt that the Faces program provided the greatest impact among employees in an almost subliminal way. People relate to people. People like to read about their colleagues. These were people they knew or with whom they could relate – not characters from stock photos. The Faces became brand ambassadors for Hershey’s benefit and wellness programs.

Save a Life with Emergency-Response Scenarios


The purpose of the “Save a Life” program was to increase awareness of correct workplace emergency responses.


Emergency-response scenarios appeared every four-to-six months in the myHR News and on digital screens. The scenarios provided employees with a hypothetical medical situation and four options for handling that situation. After selecting the response, the employee was given the correct response and then redirected to the myHR website page with the emergency and non-emergency medical response processes for their location. The scenarios were created to give employees a real-life example to apply their knowledge (or lack thereof) of Hershey’s corporate emergency-response process.

By housing the scenarios on Websurveyor, I could provide detailed analytics to the Health Services team.

JNC role: I designed all communications, built the Websurveyor sites used to house the scenarios, and provided an analysis of the response and recommendations. The scenarios were provided by the Health Services team.

Audience: Hershey, PA, corporate employees in non-plant locations.

Save a Life 201309 Photo
 September 2013 Save a Life Scenario

myHR News (September 2013)

Scenario (the actual scenario on Websurveyor was interactive)

Digital screen

Data analysis

Results and recommendations


As of the September 2013 scenario, 93.3% of respondents reported that the scenarios were helpful. Yet, only 4.1% of the targeted audience completed the scenario. This information was too important for poor participation. I felt this was an example of a communication that did not fit the one-size-fits-all approach of the then-current communication strategy as deemed by HR senior leadership. I recommended that the Health Services team consider the alternative approaches I suggested and at the very least gain approval for targeted one-off emails. Based on my data and analysis, my manager agreed with my assessment and recommendation.

More Info

I appreciate your comments and feedback about any of these communications. Let me know what you like or don’t like or if you have any questions about the communication strategy, the program, or vendors used. Just ask me! Also, from one peer to another, if you see a typo, please let me know. Thanks!

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