We’ve known for a long time about the benefits of health promotion in the workplace. Less understood is how technology factors into the equation. For many people, the word “tech” evokes images of Fitbits, Apple Watches, and other wearable devices that keep track of steps and other health metrics. Except, when it comes to workplace wellbeing, these only scratch the surface. There are countless ways technology can help HR professionals not only manage their wellness programs, but bring them to the next level while keeping costs down.
Here are five ways that technology can transform not just your wellness program, but your organization at large:
In the old days, “corporate wellness” meant giving employees a discounted gym membership. This was great for gym rats, but not for folks who didn’t already have an established fitness routine. Some organizations went as far as to provide standing desks, but only for those who asked. But when it came to weight loss, smoking cessation, and other wellbeing initiatives, employees were entirely on their own. Part of the problem was that the unique needs of individual employees were so diverse that a one-size-fits all program couldn’t possible address them all without massive expense. How do you offer a personalized wellness platform for hundreds or even thousands of employees? It was simply cheaper and easier to offer the bare minimum.
But technology has simplified corporate wellness to such as degree that personalized wellness is not only possible, but inexpensive. For instance, with Woliba, users begin by taking a wellness assessment to identify areas of concern and take charge of their own health by embarking on countless journeys, from weight loss to meditation to weight training to mindfulness. Users can even reach out to Woliba wellness professionals who can offer even more personalized attention. The wellness assessment is fully automated, meaning employees can follow their own paths without constant support and management from HR.
Imagine having to manage a wellness program for dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of employees. It would take a full-time job—perhaps even several—just to coordinate events and send out email reminders. A technologically advance wellness platform can do all of this for you.
The Woliba dashboard, for example, allows HR departments to oversee employee engagement, activity, and wellness data at a glance. Instead of having to pull data from a dozen different databases, the dashboard provides all the information you need in one accessible location. The platform also allows you to interact with employees on the social feed to create organization-wide events and challenges. With built-in calendar integration, scheduling events is simple and painless. Finally, ask any HR professional what their least favorite task is, and most will say: “Writing the same email over and over.” A wellness platform like Woliba allows you to stop wasting time manually writing out organization-wide emails. Instead, Woliba automatically schedules and sends reminder emails to keep employees engaged and on track.
Every day it seems there is a new wearable device, iOS version, and communication tool flooding the marketplace. Since the Covid-19 pandemic sent millions of Americans home, newly essential apps like Slack and Zoom have become household names. What’s the point of investing in a wellness program designed for yesterday’s tech when it can’t handle today’s?
Robust wellness platforms like Woliba seamlessly integrate with all popular fitness devices and apps, including Garmin, Fitbit, Apple Watch, Strava, Google Fit, HealthKit, Run Keeper, and Withings. This means that Woliba automatically uploads their bike rides, hikes, swims, and other activities, making it easy to earn points and compete in company-wide events and challenges. Woliba also integrates with communication tools like Slack, as well as Google Calendar, iCalendar, Outlook, and Yahoo! Calendar. Our free app is available on the Apple and Android app stores, so you can easily monitor your progress on the go.
Reduce Costs with Company-Wide Risk Assessments
Big data and predictive analytics has swept the healthcare field in recent years, especially when it comes to chronic health issues. People with underlying conditions pay more for healthcare, as do employers who provide them health insurance. For too long, wellness programs have been reactive, meaning they help address health issues after they develop. But what if your company wellness program could identify areas of concern among your employees before they begin costing the employee and the organization money?
That’s where company-wide risk assessments come into play. When employees enroll in a corporate wellness program like Woliba, you can anonymously gather data on employee health to understand organization-wide areas of concern, allowing you to create laser-focused health initiatives to address potential problems before they occur. At Woliba, our clients have seen over 80 percent employee enrollment in our wellness platform, leading to health claims dropping by up to 400 percent for engaged users. Our analytics have helped users achieve goals including weight-loss, reduced stress, improved cardiovascular health, and diabetes management. All told, 92 percent of Woliba users say our program increased their personal health, while more than 80 percent have become more motivated to increase their daily activity.
Gamification and Other Social Features
Not everyone likes working out alone. Especially for people beginning a fitness or diet program for the first time, staying motivated can be an uphill battle. Having a buddy join you on that journey can make all the difference in the world. With a wellness platforms like Woliba, finding a likeminded training buddies is simple and easy. With meetup groups and message boards, fellow users of all fitness levels are just clicks away—whether in your company network or in the broader Woliba community.
Meanwhile, research shows that gamification features create a constant positive feedback loop to increase motivation. More and more organizations are using game mechanics to engage employees and drive behavior change. Game mechanics motivate employees to make proactive changes to improve their own health while helping the organization gain control over skyrocketing healthcare costs. Advanced wellness platforms like Woliba assign ports and rewards to active employees, helping to drive engagement. Admins can create regular challenges and company-wide challenges that boost motivation and morale while allowing employees to connect socially with their peers and cheer one another along the path to good health. With powerful reporting tools, admins can easily track and monitor data from team-wide challenges and adjust goals on the fly as the needs of the organization constantly change.
In a time when so much of the workforce remains at home, gamification features are more important than ever when it comes to maintaining social bonds. While traditional team-building challenges may not be possible, a powerful wellness platform can stage virtual challenges that keep employees accruing points and stay focused on their personal and team-wide goals. Whether it’s step competitions using smartphone health apps or rewarding employees who participate in the most virtual yoga classes, there are countless ways that your technologically advanced corporate wellness platform can keep your team motivated, engaged, and healthy.