Happy and healthy employees are key to business efficiency and productivity. Employee wellbeing and wellness continue to be the number one concern for business leaders, especially in times of pandemic crisis that significantly affects both our physical and mental health. In today’s digitized era, an efficient way to keep track of and improve workforce wellness can be done through wearable technology.
What Exactly is a Wellness Program?
A wellness program is an initiative designed to enhance and promote health and fitness that is often provided by a company. The initiative enables an organization to provide employees with gym memberships, telemedicine service, and other benefits that support individual wellbeing. Many employee wellness programs also include activities that improve overall health and wellbeing, such as resilience training, yoga, meditation, emotional and psychological wellbeing, stress management, as well as life coaching.
How Does Technology Help Enhance Wellness?
Wearable technologies are being used by an increasing number of companies to collect data on employee engagement through activity programs and health screenings. This is where screening on employee wellbeing is done individually through gadgets. With the use of wearable gadgets intended to analyze and enhance employee health, digital technology has also been incorporated as a health and wellness tracker. Many companies are actively relying on wearable technology as part of their wellness campaigns to boost employees’ health and productivity, such as using fitness-tracking bands and smartwatches. The data from these wearable gadgets can then be used to develop strategic plans for the company’s wellness program.
While smartwatches and fitness bands that measure data such as heart rate and steps are most frequently used at the office, other gadgets are also on the rise. This includes smart patches, smart goggles, and smart helmets. Each tool serves a different purpose and stores specific data. Smart patches, for example, can monitor health indicators such as heart rate variability, blood pressure, and posture, while smart goggles increase employees’ eyesight with information overlays that improve decision-making in warehouses and on construction sites. At the same time, smart helmets can increase worker safety by recording important statistics about their physical health.
Pandemic and Wearable Technology
The threat of the COVID-19 pandemic is still around and companies have to focus on implementing necessary measures in order to keep both the business and its people safe. The use of wearable technology will be helpful in aiding the tracking and tracing system of the virus within an organization. For example, a company can create an app where employees have to report their condition of that day, both physically (body temperature, blood pressure, and other COVID-19-related symptoms) and psychologically (indication of fatigue or stress). By gathering these data through an app where employees can simply fill out from their phone, a company can take performative measures to monitor the workforce and see if they need to work from home or if they are okay coming to the office for work.
Wearables contribute to the whole picture of employee experience, enabling a more thorough approach to supporting and boosting employee engagement and retention. If a company is serious about improving employee well-being, it must also look at what happens outside of the workplace to determine if any employees are in need of a helping hand. There are many benefits of incorporating wearable technology to your company’s wellness program. Here are some of the reasons:
1 . Increase Employee Participation
Getting your staff to engage in a wellness program might be difficult. This might be due to a lack of knowledge, inconvenience, or other privacy issues, which cause fewer employees to engage in such a program. In order to engage employees and get verifiable results from wellness programs, businesses should look for new and inventive ways to assist their team in making healthy lifestyle choices. For example, utilizing a basic smartwatch like Fitbit or Samsung Galaxy Fit makes it easier for employees to collect their health data and send it to the firm without having to take extra time to go to a medical check-up.
Additionally, using wearable technologies that involve your employees in a wellness program, you may boost employee morale. You can encourage healthy competition, such as giving rewards to an employee that walks the most steps in a month.
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2 . Boost Productivity and Morale
You can build the correct wellness programs to assist your employees keep healthy if you get the right information on their health conditions via wearable devices. For example, you can provide an exercise at work program in which employees may participate in a yoga session at the workplace after work. Exercising leads to the release of endorphins, which increase happiness and battle stress. When your employees are happy at work, their productivity will improve as well.
Employers get the chance to keep track of employees’ current health and lifestyle status, detect health concerns, and adopt improved food and lifestyle choices using digital platforms linked to wearable devices. As a result, when people make better health choices, their chances of catching certain diseases decrease. This can reduce absenteeism, sick days, and at the same time, improve overall performance at work.
3 . Bringing Your Employer Branding to the Next Level
Giving out wearable devices like fitness-tracking bands, smartwatches, or simply providing an app to track employee wellbeing is both useful and cool. It is not a sin to be proud of something your company gives to you as an employee, and employers need to understand this logic. Employees love additional perks, especially ones that are worth bragging about. If a company decides to give out employees a fitness-tracking band or smartwatch, in exchange for them reporting health status as well as starting healthy exercises, they most likely will say yes.
The company gets a report on employee wellness and the employees get a gadget they can wear for many occasions as both a fitness tracker and a fashion item. This can bring your company’s employer branding to the next level, since your employees may just tell their friends or social media followers about how your company cares about their employee wellbeing.
With advanced technologies becoming the norm, it is time to make your businesses more future-ready. One method is to use technology to assist your company to create a more efficient workplace. A healthy employee spends fewer days due to sickness and tends to work more effectively. This, in turn, will have a direct impact on the bottom line and the success of your business.
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