Many companies make it their policy not to interfere in any way with the private lives of their employees, unless their personal business should encroach on the professional environment. And yet, an employer that would discipline staffers for coming to work drunk, having spats with a spouse on the premises, or taking time off to stay home with kids really has no leg to stand on when it comes to the issue of an employee wellness program. The reason is that a person’s health and wellness can play a huge role in how they perform in the office setting. So if you run a company that is at all concerned with the effects that the personal lives of employees can have on your business, you can’t ignore the impact of overall health when it comes to efficiency, morale, and ultimately your bottom line. And by instituting a wellness program you have the opportunity to create healthier, happier employees and an office that runs like a well-oiled machine.

Aside from the altruistic aspect of such an undertaking, which many companies will no doubt find difficult to justify to a board of directors or a group of accountants, there are obvious monetary benefits to consider. A health and wellness program will cost money, no doubt. You might choose to install a gym or offer free or discount memberships at a nearby facility. Or you may implement policies that turn your cafeteria into a haven for organic and vegan fare while adding healthy snack options to vending machines. At the very least you’ll want to provide employees with annual physical exams to gauge their health (and progress), and you may even include counseling services as part of the package. Many employers also offer services to help employees quit smoking, drinking, or abusing drugs.

So far you’re not seeing much in the way of savings. And yet, you might be surprised by the returns you could realize from making such an investment. For one thing, healthier employees can get discounts on insurance, saving you money on the medical benefits you provide (a savings that some companies pass on, in part, to employees as incentive to participate). However, you’ll likely see employees taking fewer sick days as a result of improved health. And when you provide services that help employees to improve their physical, mental, and emotional state, you’ll see a boost in both energy and morale that equates to greater focus and efficiency. When your employees are happy and feeling good their performance is likely to improve.

You wouldn’t operate machinery without proper maintenance and repair, and whether you view your employees as nothing more than cogs in the proverbial machine or you actually care about them as people, it’s in your best interest to keep them healthy and happy if you want them to perform at peak levels. If you have to provide services to help employees quit smoking, facilities that allow them to exercise during the workday, or a cafeteria that caters to both vegans and those on a bariatric diet, you’ll find that the payoffs are well worth the expenditure. For the company willing to shell out some money up front, the returns could far exceed expectations. You might even create a staff of brand ambassadors that improves your public image and invites new attention from consumers, business partners, and even the best and brightest amongst potential future employees.