Examine what a needs assessment is and why this is significant to the health promotion and program planning process.


Imagine that you have recently been hired as a health promotion specialist at a large company to coordinate their worksite wellness program. You are the first person ever hired by this company in this capacity. This position was created by the president of the company because she recently read an article in a magazine that said worksite wellness programs can boost profits. The company is doing well overall financially, but the president has concerns that worker absenteeism, health insurance costs, and employee morale are affecting profits. She thinks a company wellness program can help address these issues. Your supervisor is the director of human resources. He does not have a background in health promotion and education or worksite wellness and is relying on you to create their program from the ground up.

On your first day of work, your supervisor asks, “so, what are you going to do?” He would like an email from you by Thursday that outlines your plan to get the program going. You know that the first thing to do is create a needs assessment to determine where you should focus your time and budget. You are worried that your supervisor might not support doing a needs assessment first because he wants to see things move forward quickly to get results. You decide to write him an email advocating that you begin by conducting a needs assessment and outlining your plan for conducting a needs assessment with employees.

For your post, craft an email to your supervisor describing your strategy for how you will do a needs assessment in the next six weeks. Your post should be written as a formal email that you would actually send to a supervisor. In your email you should:

  • Examine what a needs assessment is and why this is significant to the health promotion and program planning process.
  • Select at least two of the needs assessment methods outlined in chapter 4 of our textbook and explain how they would be used in the needs assessment process.
  • Summarize the advantages of using these methods and address any potential disadvantages or concerns of such methods that your supervisor might raise.
  • Outline what data you intend to have at the end of the needs assessment process and how you will use it to determine your program goals.

Guided Response: Review several of your classmates’ posts and choose two to respond to. Imagine that you are the supervisor and receive this email. Create an email response that outlines potential concerns related to the proposal. What other information would you want from the health promotion specialist? Would you support doing the needs assessment based on the information contained in the email? Why or why not? Your response should be written as a formal email that you would actually send to a staff member.


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