How Talkspace Built a Modern Wellness Program for Employees

“I think the mission of Benepass is to prioritize our wellness and our self-care. And that's just perfectly aligned with who we are.” - Hallie Griffin, Virtual Office Manager, Talkspace

500+

employees

2x

engagement rate from previous vendor

Increased utilization

by international team

1

centralized wellness platform

Key Results

Benefits aligned with company mission
Better employee experience
Enhanced global experience
Scalability
Directory sync to automate employee enrollment
Enterprise-grade security

Background

Talkspace is the leading virtual behavioral healthcare company committed to making care more effective, accessible, and convenient. Their goal is to connect licensed mental health care providers with those seeking professional care from the comfort of their digital devices. Talkspace believes that everyone can benefit from therapy and develop the tools to grow, heal, and overcome day-to-day challenges.

Talkspace is a publicly-traded, fully remote company with 500+ employees based in the United States and Israel. 

A New, Fully Remote Workforce

Like many companies today, Talkspace is a  remote workforce. “From a recruiting standpoint, being a fully remote company has allowed us to source talent from everywhere, which is really, really great for us,” explains Hallie Griffin, Virtual Office Manager at Talkspace. 

However, remote work is not without its challenges. Hallie says, “When we moved to a remote model, we saw that there was a need to really take care of people.”

“We're stuck at home. We're staring at screens. Are we getting outside? We are in meetings all day and have Zoom fatigue.” – Hallie Griffin, Virtual Office Manager

Retaining and Attracting Top Talent 

In keeping with the company’s mission to make mental health care more accessible, Talkspace wanted to ensure that internal employees felt their overall wellness was cared for too. The average tenure of employees in the U.S. today is four to five years, and organizations must offer a culture built on employee engagement and productivity to increase retention rates. In fact, the organization commissioned a study — Talkspace’s Employee Stress Check 2022 Report — with The Harris Poll to better understand how to mitigate stress in the workplace. 

87% of employees today consider health and wellness programs when choosing an employer, according to a study conducted by Virgin HealthMiles/Workforce Magazine. These numbers are even higher for Gen Z and Millennial respondents, with over 50% citing such benefits as a deciding factor. Making employees feel cared for not only increases retention rates but also ensures that an organization is attracting top talent in today’s competitive market.  

Talkspace implemented a wellness program with a vendor where stipends were offered to employees, and they could pick benefits from a catalog. However, when that vendor suddenly closed shop, Talkspace began their search from square one. 

As they thought about their ideal program partner, they reflected on their challenges with the previous vendor: 

  1. Hallie had to manually add people to the platform.
  2. The catalog-based approach provided limited options for their employees, especially for their Israel-based team. 

Why Benepass 

“Benepass was uniquely able to support our global team.” Hallie Griffin, Virtual Office Manager 

Hallie and the team knew exactly what they were looking for to give Talkspace employees a best-in-class wellness program. When they found Benepass, they knew it was an instant fit.  The easy-to-use Benepass platform meant less time was needed for onboarding and training, which meant employees could get up and running with the wellness program immediately. The automated directory sync with their payroll system also meant that Hallie did not have to spend time each week adding new employees to the platform.

Benepass also offered Talkspace employees more choices on where to spend their wellness dollars. Employees can use their Benepass Visa card at any wellness vendor they want across the world. This was a drastically different experience for employees compared to the limiting catalog they previously had. “Does the catalog know about the local yoga store in Israel? I don't know. I liked that Benepass was uniquely able to support our global team,” said Hallie. 

As a company that manages sensitive mental health data, security and privacy were also key considerations for Talkspace during the vetting process. “When we were vetting vendors, it wasn't just about ease of use and functionality. It was also about security. Benepass met our high standards of security — that was a dealbreaker with other companies,” shares Hallie. 

Lastly, in searching for vendors Hallie found that many operated primarily on gift cards. She felt that the gift cards were limiting and not particularly inspirational in their use, whereas Benepass’s digital wallet approach could deliver tangible value for each unique person in their organization while also saving the company money.  

Powering the Wellness Initiative 

With the right tools in place from Benepass, Talkspace launched an updated wellness plan.  Employees receive $50 each month to spend in the categories Talkspace supports. Unlike with their previous vendor, Talkspace employees aren’t restricted to a limited catalog but instead can spend at any merchant globally in supported categories. Employees can buy things like gym memberships, nail appointments, Instacart for groceries, incense, candles, gaming, and so much more. 

Eligible items fall into categories like: 

  • Family
  • Fitness
  • Massage
  • Mental health
  • Professional development
I would highly recommend Benepass. I think that this is the first time many people have had a highly flexible benefit like this. I think that's really exciting. Benepass’s team is also very supportive and willing to troubleshoot and work through a problem.Hallie Griffin, Virtual Office Manager

Partnering With Benepass

Benepass acts as a partner to Talkspace, delivering benefits that help their team learn and grow in both their personal and professional lives. Together with Benepass, Talkspace offers perks that employees love, are easy to use, and can scale as the company grows. 

“Scalability is something we are always thinking about because we are growing,” commented Hallie. “We liked that we could launch other programs beyond wellness with Benepass. We did not find this to be true amongst the other solutions we were speaking to.”

With Benepass’s top-rated customer support team, Hallie was able to design a completely customized program that aligned Talkspace’s benefits with its overall company mission. 

“I think the mission of Benepass is to prioritize our wellness and our self-care,” Hallie explained. “And that's just perfectly aligned with who we are.” 

Key Results

  • Benefits aligned with company mission: With Benepass, Talkspace built a wellness program to improve culture across a remote workforce. 
  • Better employee experience: Giving employees more choice in how they use their wellness dollars has led to higher engagement and satisfaction. 
  • Enhanced global experience: The flexibility of the platform and global Visa card has allowed international team members to take greater advantage of the wellness program. 
  • Scalability: Talkspace can easily add to its program, expand categories, and scale to new regions with Benepass’ modern platform. 
  • Automated directory sync: Benepass integrates with Talkspace’s payroll system to automatically enroll and disenroll employees.
  • Security: Enterprise-grade security and SOC 2 compliance ensure that Talkspace’s employee data is protected.